[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Infection control practitioners (ICPs) are important partners in enhancing the US public health infrastructure, both as essential recipients of continuing education and as instructors responsible for providing this education. Focus groups were conducted at APIC 2000, the annual meeting for the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology, Inc, to determine the ICPs' priorities for educational opportunities in bioterrorism preparedness and the preferred methods of education delivery. Focus group participants affirmed the need to provide education in sessions of less than 60 minutes, with use of a variety of technologies and methods of presentation such as video, Internet, and paper-based self-learning texts. The participants' comments suggested a lack of awareness by employees in health care institutions about the potential threat of bioterrorism in the United States and a deficiency in knowledge about the potential consequences of an attack. The focus group participants believed this lack of awareness also leads to unwillingness by their administrators to allocate funds for planning and education. Since it appears that ICPs will be looking for direction and expertise from the local health departments in their communities, the first subset of professionals to target for bioterrorism education and preparedness should probably be the public health professionals.
American Journal of Infection Control 01/2002; 29(6):347-51. · 2.73 Impact Factor