While the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) work closely together in all cases of suspected bioterrorism (FBI, CDC, & U.S. Department of Justice, 2015), healthcare leaders are expected to be prepared to act in times of disaster (American College of Healthcare Executives, 2013). To prepare for potential disasters such as a bioterrorism attack, healthcare leaders are responsible for planning, organizing, controlling, and monitoring of resources. In fact, staffing, training, equipment, inventory, communication trees, inventory control, and security measures are all under the purview of healthcare leaders (Buchbinder & Shanks, 2017). This is the premise of the following assignment.

Governmental authorities have alerted the CDC that reliable information establishes the strong possibility that a terrorist group plans to expose populations of five major cities in the northwestern United States to deadly anthrax. The CDC has been asked to coordinate efforts to detect early diagnoses of anthrax with the various healthcare providers in the five cities, with local public health organizations, and state health departments of the states in which the five major cities are located. You have just been notified by the CDC that your hospital is located in one of the target cities.

At present, overburdened healthcare providers and laboratories in your area use a hodge-podge of slow and incomplete paper-based systems to report the existence of notifiable conditions to the local public health department. The health department manually enters the data from paper-based forms into their computer systems, none of which communicate directly with other local systems or the state system. The local public health department then sends the captured data to the state health department in the form of a zip file or a flash drive, which are loaded into computerized state health department surveillance systems. The state public health department must then manipulate the data in order to make it available to the CDC (O’Carroll et al., 2003).

Based on the scenario and using a systems thinking approach, address the following:

  1. According to Batchelor (2013), three problem area in EHR systems which hinder patient care and operational performance include missing functionality, slow performance and missing data. Elaborate on at least five systemic problems with the existing information systems that might hinder your facility from alerting the CDC about the occurrence and magnitude of anthrax poisoning.
  2. With the current state of your organization’s IT capability, what are the possible repercussions of the release of the contagion in the target area?
  3. Visit the CDC website and research the National Electronic Disease Surveillance System (NEDSS). Explain how the NEDSS would permit the CDC to collect more complete data on anthrax outbreaks rapidly. Identify the reasons that NEDSS would likely be a more effective means of capturing, analyzing, and comparing data across the five cities.
  4. Explain three technological strategies to prepare healthcare providers in the five-city area in the event of a terrorist attack.

Length: 2–3 pages (excluding title page, references page, and any appendices)

References: Include a minimum of 3 peer-reviewed, scholarly resources.

Your assignment should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the ideas and concepts that are presented in the course and provide new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your pitch should also reflect graduate-level writing and APA standards (6th edition). Be sure to adhere to University’s Academic Integrity Policy.


American College of Healthcare Executives. (2013, November 16). Healthcare executives’ role in emergency preparedness: policy statement. Retrieved from American College of Healthcare Executives.

Batchelor, T. (2013, September 11). EHR’s latest usability challenge: Application performance. Healthcare IT News. Retrieved from

Buchbinder, S. B., & Shanks, N. H. (2017). Introduction to health care management (3rd ed.). Burlington, MA: Jones and Bartlett Learning.

Federal Bureau of Investigation, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, & U.S. Department of Justice. (2015). Criminal and epidemiological investigation handbook. Retrieved from FBI website.

O’Carroll, P. W., Yasnoff, W. A., Ward, M. E., Ripp, L. H., & Martin, E. L. (Eds.). (2003). Public health informatics and information systems. New York, NY: Springer.