critically dependent on regular evaluation of successes and shortcomings, a task rendered more difficult in this case by the low rate of actual CBR terrorism incidents.
IOM shall identify and develop performance measures and systems to assess the effectiveness of, and to identify barriers related to, the MMRS development process. Additionally, IOM shall establish appropriate evaluation methods, tools, and processes, based upon the performance measures, to assess the MMRS development process. The products of this work will assist OEP in determining appropriate mechanisms to assess the effectiveness of, and identify barriers related to, the MMRS development process.
In Phase I, an expert committee shall identify, recommend, and develop performance measures and systems to assess the effectiveness of, and identify barriers related to, the MMRS development process at the site, jurisdictional, and governmental levels. [OEP posed 11 more specific questions relevant to this task. The questions, and the committee’s answers, are provided below in a separate section].
In Phase II, the committee shall use the performance measures developed from Phase I to recommend and then develop appropriate evaluation methods, tools, and processes to assess the MMRS development process.
The evaluation system(s) developed should be geared toward the timely assessment of each deliverable or phase of the development process with emphasis placed on identifying barriers, identifying solutions, and sharing successes of both the technical and administrative components of the MMRS program.
In the fall of 2000, IOM assembled a committee whose members provided expertise from the fields of emergency medicine, emergency and disaster management, medical toxicology, urban planning, epidemiology, public safety, public health, hospital administration, infectious diseases, mental health services, and program evaluation. This was accomplished in accordance with the established procedures of the National Academies, including an examination of possible biases and conflicts of interest and provision of an opportunity for public comment.
A wide variety of sources were used to assemble the data and the information necessary to respond to the charge. A comprehensive list of individuals who assisted the committee in this effort will be provided in the final report. An initial organizational and data-gathering meeting of the committee in December 2000 provided an overview of the MMRS program from the viewpoints of both OEP and several of the initial MMRS cities. Other speakers provided an overview of program evaluation principles and practices and some insights into two Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) programs focused on assessing state and local readiness for a variety of potential disasters.
At a subsequent meeting, in February 2001, the committee heard about the legislative and executive origins of the MMRS program and other federal counterterrorism programs.