Bioterrorism, Public Health and the Law 
Law 801: Health Care Law Seminar
Professor Vernellia R. Randall

Selected Provisions on the USA Patriot Act


Lesson Schedule
00: Intro to the Course
01: Intro to the Problem
02: Public Health System
03: Real Threat?
04: Public Health Law
05: Disease-Reporting
06: Quarantine
07: Model Act
08: Military Presence
09: Health Law Revisited


 Selected Sections of the USA Patriot Act Related to Public Health

Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism (USA Patriot Act) Act of 2001, PUBLIC LAW 107-56 [H.R. 3162], An Act To deter and punish terrorist acts in the United States and around the world, to enhance law enforcement investigatory tools, and for other purposes. (OCTOBER 26, 2001)


(a) CLARIFICATION OF PROTECTION OF PROTECTED COMPUTERS.--Section 1030(a)(5) of title 18. United States Code, is amended-- . . .

(4) by adding at the end the following:

"(B) by conduct described in clause (i), (ii), or (iii) of subparagraph (A), caused (or, in the case of an attempted offense, would, if completed, have caused)--

"(iii) physical injury to any person;

"(iv) a threat to public health or safety; or


(a) FINDINGS.--The Senate finds the following:

(1) Additional steps must be taken to better prepare the United States to respond to potential bioterrorism attacks.

(2) The threat of a bioterrorist attack is still remote, but is increasing for a variety of reasons, including--

(A) public pronouncements by Osama bin Laden that it is his religious duty to acquire weapons of mass destruction, including chemical and biological weapons;

(B) the callous disregard for innocent human life as demonstrated by the terrorists' attacks of September 11, 2001;

(C) the resources and motivation of known terrorists and their sponsors and supporters to use biological warfare;

(D) recent scientific and technological advances in agent delivery technology such as aerosolization that have made weaponization of certain germs much easier; and

(E) the increasing access to the technologies and expertise necessary to construct and deploy chemical and biological weapons of mass destruction.

(3) Coordination of Federal. State, and local terrorism research, preparedness, and response programs must be improved.

(4) States, local areas, and public health officials must have enhanced resources and expertise in order to respond to a potential bioterrorist attack.

(5) National, State, and local communication capacities must be enhanced to combat the spread of chemical and biological illness.

(6) Greater resources must be provided to increase the capacity of hospitals and local health care workers to respond to public health threats.

(7) Health care professionals must be better trained to recognize, diagnose, and treat illnesses arising from biochemical attacks.

(8) Additional supplies may be essential to increase the readiness of the United States to respond to a bio-attack.

(9) Improvements must be made in assuring the safety of the food supply.

(10) New vaccines and treatments are needed to assure that we have an adequate response to a biochemical attack.

(11) Government research, preparedness, and response programs need to utilize private sector expertise and resources.

(12) Now is the time to strengthen our public health system and ensure that the United States is adequately prepared to respond to potential bioterrorist attacks, natural infectious disease outbreaks, and other challenges and potential threats to the public health.

(b) SENSE OF THE SENATE.--It is the sense of the Senate that the United States should make a substantial new investment this year toward the following:

(1) Improving State and local preparedness capabilities by upgrading State and local surveillance epidemiology, assisting in the development of response plans, assuring adequate staffing and training of health professionals to diagnose and care for victims of bioterrorism, extending the electronics communicationsnetworks and training personnel, and improving public health laboratories.

(2) Improving hospital response capabilities by assisting hospitals in developing plans for a bioterrorist attack and improving the surge capacity of hospitals.

(3) Upgrading the bioterrorism capabilities of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention through improving rapid identification and health early warning systems.

(4) Improving disaster response medical systems, such as the National Disaster Medical System and the Metropolitan Medical Response System and Epidemic Intelligence Service.

(5) Targeting research to assist with the development of appropriate therapeutics and vaccines for likely bioterrorist agents and assisting with expedited drug and device review through the Food and Drug Administration.

(6) Improving the National Pharmaceutical Stockpile program by increasing the amount of necessary therapies (including smallpox vaccines and other post-exposure vaccines) and ensuring the appropriate deployment of stockpiles.

(7) Targeting activities to increase food safety at the Food and Drug Administration.

(8) Increasing international cooperation to secure dangerous biological agents, increase surveillance, and retrain biological warfare specialists.


42 USC 3711.

(a) IN GENERAL.--The Office for State and Local Domestic Preparedness Support of the Office of Justice Programs shall make a grant to each State, which shall be used by the State, in conjunction with units of local government, to enhance the capability of State and local jurisdictions to prepare for and respond to terrorist acts including events of terrorism involving weapons of mass destruction and biological, nuclear, radiological, incendiary, chemical, and explosive devices.

(b) USE OF GRANT AMOUNTS.--Grants under this section may be used to purchase needed equipment and to provide training and technical assistance to State and local first responders.


(1) IN GENERAL.--There is authorized to be appropriated to carry out this section such sums as necessary for each of fiscal years 2002 through 2007.

(2) LIMITATIONS.--Of the amount made available to carry out this section in any fiscal year not more than 3 percent may be used by the Attorney General for salaries and administrative expenses.

(3) MINIMUM AMOUNT.--Each State shall be allocated in each fiscal year under this section not less than 0.75 percent of the total amount appropriated in the fiscal year for grants pursuant to this section, except that the United States Virgin Islands. America Samoa, Guam, and the Northern Mariana Islands each shall be allocated 0.25 percent.


Critical Infrastructure Protection Act of 2001.

42 USC 5195c.

(a) SHORT TITLE.--This section may be cited as the "Critical Infrastructures Protection Act of 2001".

(b) FINDINGS.--Congress makes the following findings:

(1) The information revolution has transformed the conduct of business and the operations of government as well as the infrastructure relied upon for the defense and national security of the United States.

(2) Private business, government, and the national security apparatus increasingly depend on an interdependent network of critical physical and information infrastructures, including telecommunications, energy, financial services, water, and transportation sectors.

(3) A continuous national effort is required to ensure the reliable provision of cyber and physical infrastructure services critical to maintaining the national defense, continuity of government, economic prosperity, and quality of life in the United States.

(4) This national effort requires extensive modeling and analytic capabilities for purposes of evaluating appropriate mechanisms to ensure the stability of these complex and interdependent systems, and to underpin policy recommendations, so as to achieve the continuous viability and adequate protection of the critical infrastructure of the Nation.

(c) POLICY OF THE UNITED STATES.--It is the policy of the United States--

(1) that any physical or virtual disruption of the operation of the critical infrastructures of the United States be rare, brief, geographically limited in effect, manageable, and minimally detrimental to the economy, human and government services, and national security of the United States;

(2) that actions necessary to achieve the policy stated in paragraph (1) be carried out in a public-private partnership involving corporate and non- governmental organizations; and

(3) to have in place a comprehensive and effective program to ensure the continuity of essential Federal Government functions under all circumstances.


(1) SUPPORT OF CRITICAL INFRASTRUCTURE PROTECTION AND CONTINUITY BY NATIONAL INFRASTRUCTURE SIMULATION AND ANALYSIS CENTER.--There shall be established the National Infrastructure Simulation and Analysis Center (NISAC) to serve as a source of national competence to address critical infrastructure protection and continuity through support for activities related to counterterrorism, threat assessment, and risk mitigation.

(2) PARTICULAR SUPPORT.--The support provided under paragraph (1) shall include the following:

(A) Modeling, simulation, and analysis of the systems comprising critical infrastructures, including cyber infrastructure, telecommunications infrastructure, and physical infrastructure, in order to enhance understanding of the large-scale complexity of such systems and to facilitate modification of such systems to mitigate the threats to such systems and to critical infrastructures generally.

(B) Acquisition from State and local governments and the private sector of data necessary to create and maintain models of such systems and of critical infrastructures generally.

(C) Utilization of modeling, simulation, and analysis under subparagraph (A) to provide education and training to policymakers on matters relating to--

(i) the analysis conducted under that subparagraph;

(ii) the implications of unintended or unintentional disturbances to critical infrastructures; and

(iii) responses to incidents or crises involving critical infrastructures, including the continuity of government and private sector activities through and after such incidents or crises.

(D) Utilization of modeling, simulation, and analysis under subparagraph (A) to provide recommendations to policymakers, and to departments and agencies of the Federal Government and private sector persons and entities upon request, regarding means of enhancing the stability of, and preserving, critical infrastructures.

(3) RECIPIENT OF CERTAIN SUPPORT.--Modeling, simulation, and analysis provided under this subsection shall be provided, in particular, to relevant Federal, State, and local entities responsible for critical infrastructure protection and policy.

(e) CRITICAL INFRASTRUCTURE DEFINED.--In this section, the term "critical infrastructure" means systems and assets, whether physical or virtual, so vital to the United States that the incapacity or destruction of such systems and assets would have a debilitating impact on security, national economic security, national public health or safety, or any combination of those matters.

Related Pages:
Home ] Up ] Ohio State Statutes ] Ohio Administrative Code (Selected) ] Jacobson v Massachusetts ] DeMoise v Dowell ] [ Selected Provisions on the USA Patriot Act ] Current Challenges to Effective Communicable Disease Control ] Disease Reporting as a Tool ] The Evolution of State and Federal Public Health Authority ] Public Health Protection and Privacy of Medical Records ] The Historical Development of Reporting as a Public Health Practice ] Code of Federal Regulations (Selected) ]
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Previous Pages:
Home ] Syllabus ] Introduction to the Course ] Introduction to the Problem ] Public Health System ] Is Bioterrorism a Real Threat? ] Public Health Law and Bioterrorism ] Disease Reporting and Police Powers ] Quarantine and Police Powers ] Model State Public Health Law ] Military Presence and Public Health ] Public Health Law - Revisited ]
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