Emergent BioSolutions sponsors  discussion on biopreparedness in Europe

20 October 2009

Emergent BioSolutions Inc. has sponsored the Security and Defence Agenda’s (SDA) roundtable discussion, Raising Biopreparedness Levels in Europe, which examined European efforts in preparing and reacting to various biological threats and the potential for European cooperation in these areas.

Attended by officials and experts from the security, defence, and health communities across Europe, the roundtable discussion was designed to elevate awareness among professionals in the European Union (EU) about the importance of biopreparedness against naturally-occurring pandemics and bioterrorist attacks.

The EU is working to find the best formula to assess threats, which requires building confidence mechanisms across borders and allowing for better information exchange between the member states’ intelligence services.

Panel speakers from NATO, the European Commission, and the Office of the EU counterterrorism co-ordinator shared their experiences and expressed their views on how to ensure civilian and military safety in Europe. In view of the expected Lisbon Treaty to come into force, the solidarity among European member states is expected to further increase and possible responses could be found in regional approaches.

“Emergent BioSolutions applauds SDA for understanding both the urgency and importance of comprehensive, region-wide biopreparedness,” said Allen Shofe, senior vice president for public affairs of Emergent BioSolutions. “The SDA has demonstrated a strong commitment to biopreparedness and bio-related issues since its inception in 2002. Today’s roundtable is particularly timely as the European Commission had recently launched its CBRN Action Plan, which provides a solid foundation for increased biopreparedness.”

Biopreparedness includes the development of a comprehensive and executable preparedness and response plan well in advance of an actual biological incident. The plan encompasses research and development of medical countermeasures and their subsequent approval and procurement for government stockpiles, authorization of their use, and logistics for transporting and dispensing these medical countermeasures in the event of an attack.


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