Jones Offers Emergency Health Response Plan to Prepare State for Terrorism, Natural Disasters
Secretary of State Bill Jones (R), who is running for the Republican gubernatorial nomination, yesterday outlined his plan to prepare California for terrorism and future natural disasters, the Los Angeles Times reports. In a speech to the Public Policy Institute of California, Jones said that the health care system currently has "extremely limited ability to respond to major health-related emergencies" (Reiterman, Los Angeles Times, 12/19). Jones said that as governor he would appoint a state health officer to "prepare for and respond to a biological attack." He said he would also create a supply of drugs and use personnel from university hospitals to provide emergency care in the event of "significant biological, chemical or nuclear attacks." Jones' plan also would create a "Medical Rapid Reaction Force" of about 2,000 doctors, nurses and emergency medical technicians to respond to "major disasters" (Marinucci, San Francisco Chronicle, 12/19). The task force would handle "everything from injuries to mass inoculations." Jones added that the state's water supply and agriculture need "better protection from terrorist attacks" (Los Angeles Times, 12/14).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.