Chemical and Biological Defense: DOD Should Clarify Expectations for Medical Readiness

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Testimony issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "A 1995 Presidential Decision Directive gave the highest priority to developing the capabilities to detect, prevent, defeat, and manage the consequences of a nuclear, biological, or chemical attack. In addition, the former Secretary of Defense emphasized at his 1997 confirmation hearing the threat that U.S. forces abroad face from chemical and biological weapons. The Office of the Secretary of Defense, the joint staff, and the armed services play distinct but interrelated roles in ensuring medical readiness. Defense planning is led by the Office of the Secretary of Defense, ... continued below

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United States. General Accounting Office. November 7, 2001.

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Testimony issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "A 1995 Presidential Decision Directive gave the highest priority to developing the capabilities to detect, prevent, defeat, and manage the consequences of a nuclear, biological, or chemical attack. In addition, the former Secretary of Defense emphasized at his 1997 confirmation hearing the threat that U.S. forces abroad face from chemical and biological weapons. The Office of the Secretary of Defense, the joint staff, and the armed services play distinct but interrelated roles in ensuring medical readiness. Defense planning is led by the Office of the Secretary of Defense, which sets policy and develops defense planning guidance. On the basis of this guidance, the Joint Chiefs issue a biannual Joint Strategic Capabilities Plan for the nation's unified combat commands. These commands are responsible for fighting and winning wars within a particular area, usually defined by geographical boundaries. The commanders-in-chief develop war plans and requirements that specify the combat troops and support that will be needed to meet the threat and mission assigned by the Capabilities Plan. The services, in turn, train and equip the forces, including medical personnel, to meet the needs of the commanders-in-chief. So far, neither DOD nor the services have systematically examined the current distribution of medical personnel across specialties for adequacy in chemical and biological defense. This testimony summarizes an October report (GAO-02-38)."

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Government Accountability Office Reports

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for the U.S. Congress investigating how the federal government spends taxpayers' money. Its goal is to increase accountability and improve the performance of the federal government. The Government Accountability Office Reports Collection consists of over 13,000 documents on a variety of topics ranging from fiscal issues to international affairs.

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  • November 7, 2001

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  • June 10, 2014, 6:42 a.m.

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United States. General Accounting Office. Chemical and Biological Defense: DOD Should Clarify Expectations for Medical Readiness, text, November 7, 2001; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc290161/: accessed September 20, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.