Rx Response has developed a list of common terms and acronyms frequently used that describe the bio-pharmaceutical supply chain and emergency response partner activities. To jump to a particular letter of the alphabet, click on the letter link below.


ACIP: Per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) website, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) "consists of 15 experts in fields associated with immunization who have been selected by the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to provide advice and guidance to the Secretary, the Assistant Secretary for Health, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on the control of vaccine-preventable diseases. The committee develops written recommendations for the routine administration of vaccines to children and adults in the civilian population. The overall goals of the ACIP are to provide advice that will lead to a reduction in the incidence of vaccine preventable diseases in the United States, and an increase in the safe use of vaccines and related biological products."

AHA: Per its website, “the American Hospital Association (AHA) is the national organization that represents and serves all types of hospitals, health care networks, and their patients and communities. Close to 5,000 hospitals, health care systems, networks, other providers of care and 37,000 individual members come together to form the AHA.” (http://www.aha.org/)

APhA: Per its website, the American Pharmacists Association (APhA) is “dedicated to helping all pharmacists improve medication use and advance patient care” through its three academies, “Pharmacy Practice and Management, Pharmaceutical Research and Science, and Student Pharmacists”. (http://www.pharmacist.com/)

ARC: Per its website, the American Red Cross (ARC), “in addition to domestic disaster relief, the American Red Cross offers compassionate services in five other areas: community services that help the needy; support and comfort for military members and their families; the collection, processing and distribution of lifesaving blood and blood products; educational programs that promote health and safety; and international relief and development programs.” (http://www.redcross.org/)

ASTHO: Per its website, the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) “is the national non-profit organization representing the public health agencies of the United States, the U.S. Territories, and the District of Columbia, as well as the 120,000 public health professionals these agencies employ. ASTHO members, the chief health officials of these jurisdictions, are dedicated to formulating and influencing sound public health policy and to assuring excellence in state-based public health practice.” (http://www.astho.org/)

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BARDA: Per the Department of Health and Human Services' (HHS) website, Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) "provides an integrated, systematic approach to the development and purchase of the necessary vaccines, drugs, therapies, and diagnostic tools for public health medical emergencies. BARDA manages Project BioShield, which includes the procurement and advanced development of medical countermeasures for chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear agents, as well as the advanced development and procurement of medical countermeasures for pandemic influenza and other emerging infectious diseases that fall outside the auspices of Project BioShield. In addition, BARDA manages the Public Health Emergencies Medical Countermeasures Enterprise (PHEMCE)."

Bio-pharmaceutical Supply Chain: The Bio-pharmaceutical Supply Chain expands upon the term "Pharmaceutical Supply Chain" to include all organizations protecting patient health through the production of prescription drugs utilizing biotechnology. For more information, see "Pharmaceutical Supply Chain".

BIO: Per its website, Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) “is the world's largest biotechnology organization, providing advocacy, business development and communications services for more than 1,200 members worldwide. Our mission is to be the champion of biotechnology and the advocate for our member organizations—both large and small.” (http://www.bio.org/)

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CB: The Coordinating Body (CB) is the decision-making group that leads the Rx Response program during monitoring or activation, as well as during program management or development. This group is made up of representatives from the following organizations:

  • American Hospital Association (AHA)
  • American Red Cross (ARC)
  • Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO)
  • Generic Pharmaceutical Association (GPhA)
  • Healthcare Distribution Management Association (HDMA)
  • National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS)
  • National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA)
  • Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA)

CDC: Per its website, for over 60 years, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) “has been dedicated to protecting health and promoting quality of life through the prevention and control of disease, injury, and disability. We are committed to programs that reduce the health and economic consequences of the leading causes of death and disability, thereby ensuring a long, productive, healthy life for all people.” (http://www.cdc.gov/)

CIPAC: The Critical Infrastructure Partnership Advisory Committee (CIPAC) “provides the operational mechanism for carrying out the sector partnership structure. The CIPAC provides the framework for owner and operator members of Sector Coordinating Councils (SCC) and members of Government Coordinating Councils (GCC) to engage in intra-government and public-private cooperation, information sharing, and engagement across the entire range of critical infrastructure protection activities. CIPAC is a non-decisional body and includes sector members and government members. Sector members are the members of that sector's SCC that are owners and/or operators and the trade associations that represent them. Government members are the federal, state, local, and tribal government agencies (or their representative bodies) that comprise the GCC for each sector.”

CIP: The Critical Infrastructure Protection (CIP) Program “is a priority for the Federal government, as well as the private sector and state, local, and tribal governments…” to “… determine critical systems, identify vulnerabilities, and focus survivability enhancements on critical areas…” of both the private (85%) and public (15%) critical services sectors so that they can “be protected from all hazards, both natural and man-made disasters and terrorism, whether a cyber-related threat or large-scale physical attack.”

CMS: Per its website, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' (CMS) mission is "to ensure effective, up-to-date health care coverage and to promote quality care for beneficiaries", and their vision is "to achieve a transformed and modernized health care system." (http://www.cms.gov/)

COOP: As defined by FEMA, Continuity of Operations (COOP) is “an effort within individual agencies to ensure they can continue to perform their Mission Essential Functions (MEFs) and Primary Mission Essential Functions (PMEFs) during a wide range of emergencies, including localized acts of nature, accidents, and technological or attack-related emergencies.”

Credentialing: As defined by the National Incident Management System (NIMS), credentialing “is the administrative process for validating the qualifications of personnel and assessing their background, for authorization and permitting/granting access to an incident, involving mutual aid between states (interstate).”

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DHS: Per its website, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) “has a vital mission: to secure the nation from the many threats we face. This requires the dedication of more than 225,000 employees in jobs that range from aviation and border security to emergency response, from cyber security analyst to chemical facility inspector. Our duties are wide-ranging, but our goal is clear – keeping America safe.” (http://www.dhs.gov/)

DOD: Per its website, the mission of the Department of Defense (DOD) “is to provide the military forces (Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, etc.) needed to deter war and to protect the security of our country…[the DOD] contributes to homeland security through its military missions overseas, homeland defense, and support to civil authorities.” (http://www.defense.gov/)

DOE: Per its website, the mission of the Department of Energy (DOE) “is to advance the national, economic, and energy security of the United States; to promote scientific and technological innovation in support of that mission; and to ensure the environmental cleanup of the national nuclear weapons complex.” (http://www.energy.gov/)

DOH: As defined by Merriam-Webster dictionary, a Department of Health (DOH), or health department, is “a division of a local or larger government responsible for the oversight and care of matters relating to public health.”

DOJ: Per its website, the mission statement of the Department of Justice (DOJ) is “to enforce the law and defend the interests of the United States according to the law; to ensure public safety against threats foreign and domestic; to provide federal leadership in preventing and controlling crime; to seek just punishment for those guilty of unlawful behavior; and to ensure fair and impartial administration of justice for all Americans.” (http://www.justice.gov/)

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EPA: Per its website, the mission of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is “to protect human health and the environment. To accomplish this mission, we develop and enforce regulations, give grants, study environmental issues, sponsor partnerships, teach people about the environment, and publish information.” (http://www.epa.gov/)

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FDA: Per its website, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) “is responsible for protecting the public health by assuring the safety, efficacy, and security of human and veterinary drugs, biological products, medical devices, our nation’s food supply, cosmetics, and products that emit radiation. The FDA is also responsible for advancing the public health by helping to speed innovations that make medicines and foods more effective, safer, and more affordable; and helping the public get the accurate, science-based information they need to use medicines and foods to improve their health.” (http://www.fda.gov/)

FEMA: Per its website, the Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA)’s mission “is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.” (http://www.fema.gov/)

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GCC: According to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) website, the Government Coordinating Councils (GCCs) “bring together diverse federal, state, local and tribal interests to identify and develop collaborative strategies that advance critical infrastructure protection. GCCs serve as a counterpart to the SCC for each critical infrastructure and key resource sector. They provide interagency coordination around CIKR strategies and activities, policy and communication across government, and between government and the sector to support the nation's homeland security mission. GCCs coordinate with and support the efforts of SCCs to plan, implement and execute sufficient and necessary sector-wide security to support the CIKR sector. GCCs can leverage complementary resources within government and between government and CIKR owners and operators.”

GPhA: Per its website, the Generic Pharmaceutical Association (GPhA) “represents the manufacturers and distributors of finished generic pharmaceutical products, manufacturers and distributors of bulk active pharmaceutical chemicals, and suppliers of other goods and services to the generic pharmaceutical industry…GPhA's core purpose is to improve the lives of consumers by providing timely access to affordable pharmaceuticals.” (http://www.gphaonline.org/)

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H1N1 (2009 H1N1): As defined by the Flu.gov website, “[2009] H1N1 (Swine) flu is a new influenza virus causing illness in people. It has two genes from flu viruses that normally circulate in pigs in Europe and Asia, plus avian genes and human genes. Scientists call this a “quadruple reassortant” virus…This new virus was first detected in people in the United States in April 2009. The virus is spreading from person-to-person, in the same way that regular seasonal influenza viruses spread…While the vast majority of people who have contracted H1N1 (Swine) flu have recovered without needing medical treatment, hospitalizations and deaths have occurred…About 70 percent of people who have been hospitalized with H1N1 (Swine) flu have had one or more medical conditions that placed them in the “high risk” category for serious seasonal flu-related complications. These include pregnancy, diabetes, heart disease, asthma, and kidney disease. Key symptoms include:

  • Fever
  • Coughing and/or sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Headaches and/or body aches
  • Chills
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea and/or diarrhea”

HDMA: Per its website, the Healthcare Distribution Management Association (HDMA)’s mission statement is to “protect patient safety and access to medicines through the safe and efficient distribution of healthcare products and services…create and exchange industry knowledge and best practices to enhance the value of the healthcare supply chain…and advocate for standards, public policies and business processes that produce safe, innovative and cost-effective healthcare solutions. HDMA is the national association representing primary, full-service healthcare distributors. Each business day, HDMA member companies deliver more than nine million prescription medicines and healthcare products to more than 165,000 settings including chain and community pharmacies, hospitals, nursing homes, physician offices and clinics in every state and territory.” (http://www.healthcaredistribution.org/)

HHS: Per its website, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) “is the United States government's principal agency for protecting the health of all Americans and providing essential human services, especially for those who are least able to help themselves. The department includes more than 300 programs, covering a wide spectrum of activities.” Also known as DHHS. (http://www.hhs.gov/)

HICS: Per the California Emergency Medical Services Authority (EMSA)'s website, the Hospital Incident Command System (HICS) is "a management system based on NIMS that consists of a flexible organization structure and time-proven management principles. The system includes defined [hospital-specific] responsibilities and reporting channels and uses common language to promote internal and external communication and integration with community responders."

HIMSS: Per its website, the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) is "the healthcare industry's membership organization focused on providing global leadership for the optimal use of healthcare information technology (IT) and management systems for the betterment of healthcare." HIMSS "frames and leads healthcare public policy and industry practices through its advocacy, educational and professional development initiatives designed to promote information and management systems' contributions to ensuring quality patient care." HIMSS's vision is "advancing the best use of information and management systems for the betterment of health care" and its mission statement is to "lead healthcare transformation through the effective use of health information technology." (http://www.himss.org/)

HPH: Per the HSIN Portal, the Healthcare and Public Health (HPH) sector is "one of 18 Critical Infrastructures/Key Resources (CI/KR) outlined in the National Infrastructure Protection Plan (NIPP)." HPH's mission is to "sustain the essential functions of the Nation's healthcare and public health delivery system and to support effective emergency preparedness and response to nationally significant hazards by implementing strategies, evaluating risks, coordinating plans and policy advice, and providing guidance to prepare, protect, prevent, and when necessary, respond to attacks on the Nation's infrastructure and ensure the necessary resiliency in infrastructure to recover and reconstitute healthcare and public health." The HPH sector "is made up of a Government Coordinating Council (GCC) that represents governmental agencies, at all levels, and the Sector Coordinating Council (SCC)". Also see "SCC" and "GCC" for more information.

HSCC: Per its website, the Healthcare Sector Coordinating Council’s vision statement is to:

  • “Achieve overall resiliency against all threats? natural and manmade
  • Prevent or minimize damage to, or destruction of, the Nation’s healthcare and public health infrastructure
  • Preserve its ability to mount timely and effective responses to both routine and emergency situations
  • Strive to protect its critical workforce from harm resulting from terrorist or criminal activities, from natural disasters, and from serious infectious disease outbreaks, including those originating outside the United States.”

HSIN: Per the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) website, the Homeland Security Information Network (HSIN) is "a comprehensive, nationally secure and trusted web-based platform able to facilitate Sensitive But Unclassified (SBU) information sharing and collaboration between federal, state, local, tribal, private sector, and international partners. The HSIN platform was created to interface with existing information sharing networks to support the diverse Communities of Interest (COI) engaged in preventing, protecting from, responding to, and recovering from all threats, hazards and incidents under the jurisdiction of the Department of Homeland Security."

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ICS: Per the FEMA website, the Incident Command Structure (ICS) is "a standardized, on-scene, all-hazards incident management approach that:

  • Allows for the integration of facilities, equipment, personnel, procedures, and communications operating within a common organizational structure.
  • Enables a coordinated response among various jurisdictions and functional agencies, both public and private;
  • Establishes common processes for planning and managing resources.

ICS is flexible and can be used for incidents of any type, scope, and complexity. ICS allows its users to adopt an integrated organizational structure to match the complexities and demands of a single or multiple incidents."

ILI: Per the CDC's website, the CDC's definition of Influenza-Like Illness (ILI) is "a fever greater than or equal to 37.8 degrees C at presentation with a cough and/or sore throat." High probability ILI is defined as "a fever greater than or equal to 38.2 degrees C at presentation with a cough."

IOM: Per its website, the Institute of Medicine is "an independent, nonprofit organization that works outside of government to provide unbiased and authoritative advice to decision makers and the public." The IOM's mission is to serve as adviser to the nation to improve health." (http://www.iom.edu/)

ISACs: Information Sharing and Analysis Centers (ISACs) are designed to support and enable the secure transfer of information between the government and private sector critical infrastructures within a specific sector, as well as information sharing between the various critical infrastructure sectors. Per a whitepaper published by the ISAC Council, each ISAC:

  • "Provides to its constituency a 24/7 secure operating capability that establishes the sector's specific information sharing/intelligence requirements for incidents, threats and vulnerabilities;
  • Collects, analyzes and disseminates alerts and incident reports to its membership based on its sector focused subject matter analytical expertise;
  • Helps the government understand impacts for its sector;
  • Provides an electronic, trusted capability for its membership to exchange and share information on cyber, physical and all other threats in order to defend the critical infrastructure; and
  • Shares and provides analytical support to government and other ISACs regarding technical sector details and in mutual information sharing and assistance during actual or potential sector disruptions, whether caused by intentional, accidental or natural events."

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Licensing: Per the Medical Free Online Dictionary, licensing is “the granting of permission by a competent authority (usually a government agency) to an organization or individual to engage in a practice or activity that would otherwise be illegal. Kinds of licensure include the issuing of licenses for general hospitals or nursing homes, for health professionals such as physicians, and for the production or distribution of biologic products. Licensure is usually granted on the basis of education and examination rather than performance. It is usually permanent, but a periodic fee, demonstration of competence, or continuing education may be required. Licensure may be revoked by the granting agency for incompetence, criminal acts, or other reasons stipulated in the rules governing the specific area of licensure.” Licensing is often restricted to the specific state that issues such licensure. In a disaster, some states have emergency legislative stipulations that, when enacted, enable professionals licensed by other states/agencies to be licensed (and protected from legal repercussions) within the affected state.

LLIS: Per its website, Lessons Learned Information Sharing (LLIS) is "the national network of Lessons Learned and Best Practices for emergency response providers and homeland security officials. LLIS.gov's secure, restricted-access information is designed to facilitate efforts to prevent, prepare for and respond to acts of terrorism and other incidents across all disciplines and communities throughout the US." (https://www.llis.dhs.gov/)

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NABP: Per its website, the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP) “is the independent, international, and impartial association that assists its member boards and jurisdictions in developing, implementing, and enforcing uniform standards for the purpose of protecting the public health.” (http://www.nabp.net/)

NACCHO: Per its website, the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) “is the national organization representing local health departments. NACCHO supports efforts that protect and improve the health of all people and all communities by promoting national policy, developing resources and programs, seeking health equity, and supporting effective local public health practice and systems.” (http://www.naccho.org/)

NACDS: Per its website, “To advance the interests and objectives of the chain community pharmacy industry, by fostering its growth and promoting its role as a provider of healthcare services and consumer products.

NASPA: Per its website, the National Alliance of State Pharmacy Associations (NASPA) “promotes leadership, sharing, learning, and policy exchange among state pharmacy associations and pharmacy leaders nationwide, and provides education and advocacy to support pharmacists, patients, and communities working together to improve public health.” (http://www.naspa.us/)

NBSB: The National Biodefense Science Board (NBSB) was created by the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Act in 2006 to "provide expert advice and guidance to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on scientific, technical, and other matters of special interest to HHS regarding current and future chemical, biological, nuclear, and radiological events, whether naturally occurring, accidental, or deliberate." Modifications to the charter in 2008 also enable the NBSB to "provide advice and guidance to the Secretary on other matters related to public health emergency preparedness and response."

NCPA: Per its website, the National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA) “represents the pharmacist owners, managers, and employees more than 23,000 independent community pharmacies across the United States”, who are responsible for dispensing “nearly half of the nation's retail prescription medicines.”

NCPDP: Per its website, the National Council for Prescription Drug Programs (NCPDP) "creates and promotes the transfer of data related to medications, supplies, and services within the healthcare system through the development of standards and industry guidance. The organization provides a forum and support wherein our diverse membership can efficiently and effectively develop and maintain these standards and guidance through a consensus building process in collaboration with other industry organizations. NCPDP also offers its members resources, including educational opportunities and database services, to better manage their businesses. (http://www.ncpdp.org/)

NCR: National Capital Region (NCR) is a common term for the region or district surrounding the capital city of a country or any other administrative division. It is not always the official term for the region, but may sometimes be used as an informal synonym. In the United States, this refers to Washington, D.C. and the surrounding counties and independent cities in Maryland and Virginia.

NCS: Per its website, the “National Communications System (NCS) began in 1962…as a single unified communications system to serve the President, Department of Defense, diplomatic and intelligence activities, and civilian leaders…The NCS expanded from its original six members to an interagency group of 23 Federal departments and agencies, and began coordinating and planning National Security/Emergency Preparedness (NS/EP) telecommunications to support crises and disasters…With the addition of the Office of the Director, National Intelligence in September 2007, the NCS membership currently stands at 24 members. Currently, the DHS Undersecretary for National Protection and Programs serves as the NCS Manager.” (http://www.ncs.gov/)

NHC: Per its website, the National Hurricane Center (a branch of the National Weather Service) is “to save lives, mitigate property loss, and improve economic efficiency by issuing the best watches, warnings, forecasts and analyses of hazardous tropical weather, and by increasing understanding of these hazards through global outreach.” (http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/)

NIH: Per its website, the National Institutes of Health (NIH), a part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is "the primary Federal agency for conducting and supporting medical research." Its mission is "science in pursuit of fundamental knowledge about the nature and behavior of living systems and the application of that knowledge to extend healthy life and reduce the burdens of illness and disability." The agency's goals are as follows:

  1. Foster fundamental creative discoveries, innovative research strategies, and their applications as a basis to advance significantly the Nation's capacity to protect and improve health;
  2. Develop, maintain, and renew scientific human and physical resources that will assure the Nation's capability to prevent disease;
  3. Expand the knowledge base in medical and associated sciences in order to enhance the Nation's economic well-being and ensure a continued high return on the public investment in research; and
  4. Exemplify and promote the highest level of scientific integrity, public accountability, and social responsibility in the conduct of science. (http://www.nih.gov/)

NIMS: Per the FEMA website, the National Incident Management System (NIMS) "provides a systematic, proactive approach to guide departments and agencies at all levels of government, nongovernmental organizations, and the private sector to work seamlessly to prevent, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate the effects of incidents, regardless of cause, size, location, or complexity, in order to reduce the loss of life and property and harm to the environment. NIMS works hand in hand with the National Response Framework (NRF). NIMS provides the template for the management of incidents, while the NRF provides the structure and mechanisms for national-level policy for incident management."

NIPP: Per the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) website, the National Infrastructure Protection Plan (NIPP) "provides the unifying structure for the integration of a wide range of efforts for the enhanced protection and resiliency of the nation's critical infrastructure and key resources (CIKR) into a single national program. The overarching goal of the NIPP is to build a safer, more secure, and more resilient America by preventing, deterring, neutralizing, or mitigating the effects of deliberate efforts by terrorists to destroy, incapacitate, or exploit elements of our nation's CIKR and to strengthen national preparedness, timely response, and rapid recovery of CIKR in the event of an attack, natural disaster, or other emergency."

NOAA: Per its website, the National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration (NOAA)’s mission statement is “to understand and predict changes in Earth’s environment and conserve and manage coastal and marine resources to meet our Nation’s economic, social, and environmental needs. From daily weather forecasts, severe storm warnings and climate monitoring to fisheries management, coastal restoration and supporting marine commerce, NOAA’s products and services support economic vitality and affect more than one-third of America’s gross domestic product.” (http://www.noaa.gov/)

NRC: Per its website, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) “was created as an independent agency by Congress in 1974 to enable the nation to safely use radioactive materials for beneficial civilian purposes while ensuring that people and the environment are protected. The NRC regulates commercial nuclear power plants and other uses of nuclear materials, such as in nuclear medicine, through licensing, inspection and enforcement of its requirements.” (http://www.nrc.gov/)

NRF: Per the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) website, the National Response Framework (NRF) "presents the guiding principles that enable all response partners to prepare for and provide a unified national response to disasters and emergencies. It establishes a comprehensive, national, all-hazards approach to domestic incident response...The National Response Framework defines the principles, roles, and structures that organize how we respond as a nation and:

  • Describes how communities, tribes, states, the federal government, private-sectors, and nongovernmental partners work together to coordinate national response;
  • Describes specific authorities and best practices for managing incidents; and
  • Builds upon the National Incident Management System (NIMS), which provides a consistent template for managing incidents.

NTSB: Per its website, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) “is an independent Federal agency charged by Congress with investigating every civil aviation accident in the United States and significant accidents in the other modes of transportation -- railroad, highway, marine and pipeline -- and issuing safety recommendations aimed at preventing future accidents. The Safety Board determines the probable cause of:

  • all U.S. civil aviation accidents and certain public-use aircraft accidents;
  • selected highway accidents;
  • railroad accidents involving passenger trains or any train accident that results in at least one fatality or major property damage;
  • major marine accidents and any marine accident involving a public and a nonpublic vessel;
  • pipeline accidents involving a fatality or substantial property damage;
  • releases of hazardous materials in all forms of transportation; and
  • selected transportation accidents that involve problems of a recurring nature.” (http://www.ntsb.gov/)

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OSHA: Per its website, the Occupational Safety & Health Administration's (OSHA) role is to "assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women; by authorizing enforcement of the standards developed under the Act; by assisting and encouraging the States in their efforts to assure safe and healthful working conditions; by providing for research, information, education, and training in the field of occupational safety and health." (http://www.osha.gov/)

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PCIS: Per its website, the mission of the Partnership for Critical Infrastructure Security (PCIS) is "to coordinate cross-sector initiatives that promote public and private efforts to help ensure secure, safe, and reliable critical infrastructure services. This mission encompasses physical, cyber, and human security that rely on strong infrastructure integrity and resilience. Accordingly, the PCIS mission spans the full spectrum of critical infrastructure matters from prevention, planning, and preparedness to business continuity, mitigation, response, and recovery. PCIS focuses primarily on cross-sector policy, strategy, and interdependency issues affecting the critical infrastructure sectors." (http://www.pcis.org/)

Pharmaceutical Supply Chain/System: As defined by the Kaiser Family Foundation, the pharmaceutical supply chain/system is “the means through which prescription medicines are delivered to patients. Pharmaceuticals originate in manufacturing sites; are transferred to wholesale distributors; stocked at retail, mail-order, and other types of pharmacies; subject to price negotiations and processed through quality and utilization management screens by pharmacy benefit management companies (PBMs); dispensed by pharmacies; and ultimately delivered to and taken by patients. There are many variations on this basic structure, as the players in the supply chain are constantly evolving, and commercial relationships vary considerably by geography, type of medication, and other factors.” Also see "Bio-pharmaceutical Supply Chain".

PhRMA: Per its website, the “Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) represents the country’s leading pharmaceutical research and biotechnology companies, which are devoted to inventing medicines that allow patients to live longer, healthier, and more productive lives. PhRMA's mission is to conduct effective advocacy for public policies that encourage discovery of important new medicines for patients by pharmaceutical/biotechnology research companies.” (http://www.phrma.org/)

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SBA: Per its website, the “U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) was created in 1953 as an independent agency of the federal government to aid, counsel, assist and protect the interests of small business concerns, to preserve free competitive enterprise and to maintain and strengthen the overall economy of our nation. The SBA helps Americans start, build and grow businesses.” (http://www.sba.gov/)

SCC: Per the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) website, Sector Coordinating Councils “foster and facilitate the coordination of sector-wide activities and initiatives designed to improve the security of the nation's critical infrastructure. They are self-organized, self-led, broadly representative of owners and operators (and their associations) within the sector, and are focused on homeland security and critical infrastructure protection. The Department has a strong preference that each SCC be chaired by an owner and/or operator. Government agencies may suggest the inclusion of various parts of a sector but it is the responsibility of each SCC to identify the sector's boundaries, establish the criteria for membership, seek broad participation and representation of the diversity of the sector, and, establish the governance, business case, and work processes of the sector's SCC.” Each SCC represents the private sector organizations that make up the industry's Critical Infrastructures/Key Resources.

SEOC: According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), [State] Emergency Operations Centers ([S]EOCs) are "the physical location at which the coordination of information and resources to support incident management (on-scene operations) activities normally takes place...[organized] by jurisdiction (e.g. Federal, State, regional, tribal, city, county)...".

SNS: Per the CDC’s website, the “CDC's Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) has large quantities of medicine and medical supplies to protect the American public if there is a public health emergency (terrorist attack, flu outbreak, earthquake) severe enough to cause local supplies to run out. Once Federal and local authorities agree that the SNS is needed, medicines will be delivered to any state in the U.S. within 12 hours. Each state has plans to receive and distribute SNS medicine and medical supplies to local communities as quickly as possible.”

ST: The Support Team (ST) is the group responsible for supporting the backend functions of the Rx Response program, including administering InfoCenter, sending out emergency notification messages, and supporting the Coordinating Body’s and other partner’s needs during both times of emergency and periods of normal operations.

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USDA: Per its website, the mission of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is to “provide leadership on food, agriculture, natural resources, and related issues based on sound public policy, the best available science, and efficient management. Their vision statement is to “be a dynamic organization that is able to enhance agricultural trade, improve farm economies and quality of life in rural America, protect the Nation’s food supply, improve the Nation’s nutrition, and protect and enhance the Nation’s natural resource base and environment.” (http://www.usda.gov/)

USGS: Per its website, the United States Geological Survey (USGS) “serves the Nation by providing reliable scientific information to describe and understand the Earth; minimiz[ing] loss of life and property from natural disasters; manag[ing] water, biological, energy, and mineral resources; and enhanc[ing] and protect[ing] our quality of life.” (http://www.usgs.gov/)

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VA: Per its website, the United States Veteran’s Administration’s goal is “to provide excellence in patient care, veterans' benefits and customer satisfaction”, their mission statement is to “to fulfill President Lincoln’s promise – ‘To care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan’ – by serving and honoring the men and women who are America’s veterans”, and their vision statement is to “provide veterans the world-class benefits and services they have earned – and to do so by adhering to the highest standards of compassion, commitment, excellence, professionalism, integrity, accountability, and stewardship.” (http://www.va.gov/)

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WHO: Per their website, the World Health Organization (WHO) “is the directing and coordinating authority for health within the United Nations system. It is responsible for providing leadership on global health matters, shaping the health research agenda, setting norms and standards, articulating evidence-based policy options, providing technical support to countries and monitoring and assessing health trends.” (http://www.who.int/)

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Emily Lord

July 28, 2015

Rx Response ‘2.0’: A New Focus, New Talent, and New Look


As I announced in an April blog post, Rx Response is excited to be embarking on a new chapter, one that focuses on proactively solving problems before an event occurs in an effort to build community health resiliency. It’s been a busy past couple months as we’ve begun th... (more)

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