6 USC 597a: Medical countermeasures
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6 USC 597a: Medical countermeasures Text contains those laws in effect on June 11, 2024
From Title 6-DOMESTIC SECURITYCHAPTER 1-HOMELAND SECURITY ORGANIZATIONSUBCHAPTER XIV-COUNTERING WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION OFFICEPart C-Chief Medical Officer
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§597a. Medical countermeasures

(a) In general

Subject to the availability of appropriations, the Secretary shall, as appropriate, establish a medical countermeasures program within the components of the Department to-

(1) facilitate personnel readiness and protection for the employees and working animals of the Department in the event of a chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, or explosives attack, naturally occurring disease outbreak, other event impacting health, or pandemic; and

(2) support the mission continuity of the Department.

(b) Oversight

The Secretary, acting through the Chief Medical Officer of the Department, shall-

(1) provide programmatic oversight of the medical countermeasures program established under subsection (a); and

(2) develop standards for-

(A) medical countermeasure storage, security, dispensing, and documentation;

(B) maintaining a stockpile of medical countermeasures, including antibiotics, antivirals, antidotes, therapeutics, and radiological countermeasures, as appropriate;

(C) ensuring adequate partnerships with manufacturers and executive agencies that enable advance prepositioning by vendors of inventories of appropriate medical countermeasures in strategic locations nationwide, based on risk and employee density, in accordance with applicable Federal statutes and regulations;

(D) providing oversight and guidance regarding the dispensing of stockpiled medical countermeasures;

(E) ensuring rapid deployment and dispensing of medical countermeasures in a chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, or explosives attack, naturally occurring disease outbreak, other event impacting health, or pandemic;

(F) providing training to employees of the Department on medical countermeasures; and

(G) supporting dispensing exercises.

(c) Medical countermeasures working group

The Secretary, acting through the Chief Medical Officer of the Department, shall establish a medical countermeasures working group comprised of representatives from appropriate components and offices of the Department to ensure that medical countermeasures standards are maintained and guidance is consistent.

(d) Medical countermeasures management

Not later than 120 days after the date on which appropriations are made available to carry out subsection (a), the Chief Medical Officer shall develop and submit to the Secretary an integrated logistics support plan for medical countermeasures, including-

(1) a methodology for determining the ideal types and quantities of medical countermeasures to stockpile and how frequently such methodology shall be reevaluated;

(2) a replenishment plan; and

(3) inventory tracking, reporting, and reconciliation procedures for existing stockpiles and new medical countermeasure purchases.

(e) Transfer

Not later than 120 days after December 27, 2021, the Secretary shall transfer all medical countermeasures-related programmatic and personnel resources from the Under Secretary for Management to the Chief Medical Officer.

(f) Stockpile elements

In determining the types and quantities of medical countermeasures to stockpile under subsection (d), the Secretary, acting through the Chief Medical Officer of the Department-

(1) shall use a risk-based methodology for evaluating types and quantities of medical countermeasures required; and

(2) may use, if available-

(A) chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear risk assessments of the Department; and

(B) guidance on medical countermeasures of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

(g) Briefing

Not later than 180 days after December 27, 2021, the Secretary shall provide a briefing to the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs of the Senate and the Committee on Homeland Security of the House of Representatives regarding-

(1) the plan developed under subsection (d); and

(2) implementation of the requirements of this section.

(h) Definition

In this section, the term "medical countermeasures" means antibiotics, antivirals, antidotes, therapeutics, radiological countermeasures, and other countermeasures that may be deployed to protect the employees and working animals of the Department in the event of a chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, or explosives attack, naturally occurring disease outbreak, other event impacting health, or pandemic.

(Pub. L. 107–296, title XIX, §1932, as added Pub. L. 117–81, div. F, title LXIV, §6408(a), Dec. 27, 2021, 135 Stat. 2404 .)