PDAs Enlisted in War on Terror
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is testing a system that uses personal digital assistants to send biological warfare information to health-care workers.The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is testing a system that uses personal digital assistants to send biological warfare information to health-care workers. The three-month pilot test of the PDA network is meant to determine the best way for federal officials to communicate with clinicians on the front line in the event of a bioterrorist attack, according to HHS officials in Washington. The test message will contain a special memo on the most threatening biological diseases and agents, such as anthrax, botulism, plague, smallpox, tularemia, and viral hemorrhagic fevers, including Ebola. The message also will include links to Web sites that contain further information about diagnosing and treating these conditions. The pilot will determine whether clinicians find it useful to receive such information on a PDA.
"This will literally allow them to have critical information at their fingertips when they need it most," said Tommy Thompson, secretary of Health and Human Services, in a statement.
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