A Focus on Preparedness

The committee recommends that CDC work with states to decide what more is needed to achieve smallpox preparedness, if anything. Further, given the routine turnover in personnel, each state should evaluate what it needs to maintain this preparedness.

A Need for Evaluation

The committee recommends that CDC comprehensively evaluate the program and its outcomes in order to improve its implementation and to protect the vaccinees and the public.


The committee recommends CDC revisit and communicate to the public the program’s objectives in view of state-level realities, and provide a preliminary perspective on the national and state success in reaching those objectives. The CDC should continue to support, as well as build on the experience of state and local health departments who are developing their communication strategies about state and local program implementation.

The committee recommends that CDC and its state and local partners develop communications strategies that:

  • Provide adequate quality and quantity of information.

  • Are timely.

  • Reassure the public that efforts are in progress to protect them in the event of a smallpox attack.

The committee recommends CDC develop and offer journalists training materials and opportunities specifically designed for the media, explaining the program’s clinical components, providing the best available scientific evidence, and dedicating staff experts to provide technical support to media representatives.

Training and Education

The committee recommends that all print materials addressed to a diverse audience (e.g., the public) should be easily read and understood by all members of that audience. Also, all communication materials in other languages should be culturally appropriate.

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