The National Academies: What You Need To Know About Infectious Disease

The National Academies

What You Need To Know About Infectious Disease

Information Sharing and Collaboration: Applications to Integrated Biosurveillance—Workshop Summary (2011)

After the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and subsequent anthrax mailings, the U.S. government prioritized a biosurveillance strategy aimed at detecting, monitoring, and characterizing national security health threats in human and animal populations, food, water, agriculture, and the environment. However, gaps and challenges in biosurveillance efforts and integration of biosurveillance activities remain. On September 8-9, 2011, the IOM held a workshop to explore the information-sharing and collaboration processes needed for the nation's integrated biosurveillance strategy. This publication summarizes that workshop.

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What do you know about infectious disease?

True or False: Thimerosal, a mercury-containing preservative that was used in some vaccines and other products, has been shown to present a risk to human health.

  • Sorry, that’s incorrect.

    The use of thimerosal has been an object of controversy, with some arguing that the substance caused autism in children. However, extensive independent research has presented no convincing evidence of harm associated with the low levels of thimerosal previously present in vaccines.

  • Correct!

    The use of thimerosal has been an object of controversy, with some arguing that the substance caused autism in children. However, extensive independent research has presented no convincing evidence of harm associated with the low levels of thimerosal previously present in vaccines.