Bioterrorism: The Laboratory's Role and Response (Online CE Course)

(based on 1,284 customer ratings)

Garland E. Pendergraph, PhD, JD, MLS(ASCP)SM, HCLD/CC(ABB)

This course addresses the threat of bioterrorism and what clinical laboratories and laboratorians can do to be prepared. The course covers major biological and chemical agents (including their warning signs and symptoms) and the laboratory's role in the nationwide system for detecting these agents. The emphasis of the course is not on fear but on responsible action that can save lives in the unlikely event of a terrorist act.

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Continuing Education Credits

P.A.C.E.® Contact Hours (acceptable for AMT, ASCP, and state recertification): 1.5 hour(s)
Course number 578-039-16, approved through 4/30/2018
Florida Board of Clinical Laboratory Personnel Credit Hours - Supervision/Administration, Quality Control/Quality Assurance, and Safety: 1.5 hour(s)
Course number 20-547595, approved through 9/1/2018


  • Discuss the working definition of terrorism.
  • Identify the critical agents that might be suspect for a biological or chemical terrorism event and some of the clinical manifestations caused by the highest priority agents.
  • Outline the clinical laboratory’s response in a biological or chemical terrorist alert and know what you can do to protect yourself and others.
  • Summarize what you can do at work and in your community regarding preparedness, response, and determent of a possible act of terrorism.

Customer Ratings

(based on 1,284 customer ratings)

Course Outline

Click on the links below to preview selected pages from this course.
  • Terrorism Defined
  • Biological Agents
      • Biological Agents
      • Categories of Biological Agents
      • Category A
      • Category A Agents
      • Category B
      • Category B Agents
      • Category B Agents in Food and Water
      • Category C
      • Category C Agents
      • High profile landmarks such as the Statue of Liberty or the White House are the only places at risk from terrorist attack.
      • Biological agents that are the easiest to disseminate, or that pass most easily from person to person are found in Category:
  • Recognizing Biological Agents as WMDs
      • Recognizing Biological Agents as WMDs
      • Agent: Smallpox (Virus)
      • Agent: Anthrax (Bacterium)
      • Agent: Pneumonic plague (Bacterium)
      • Agent: Botulism (bacterium)
      • Agent: Tularemia (bacterium)
      • Agent: Viral hemorrhagic fevers (Ebola, Marburg, Lassa and Argentine)
      • Why Biological Agents Would be Chosen as WMDs
      • Why Biological Agents Would be Chosen as WMDs (cont.)
      • Why Biological Agents Would Not Be Chosen as WMDs
      • Early symptoms of inhaled Anthrax include
      • Is the psychological impact of a biological attack an advantage or a disadvantage of using biological weapons?
  • Laboratory Response
      • Laboratory Response
      • The LRN Pyramid
      • Sentinel Labs
      • Reference Labs
      • National Labs
      • Laboratory Response - Chemical
      • Laboratory Response - Chemical, Level 3
      • Laboratory Response - Chemical, Level 2
      • Laboratory Response - Chemical, Level 1
      • In the LRN hierarchy, large organizations like the CDC, the United States Army Medical Research Institute for Infectious Diseases, and the Naval Medic...
      • In the Chemical Component of the LRN, there are 60 laboratories divided into 3 levels. At the top, with unique facilities unavailable to the level 1 -...
  • Your Response
  • Additional Information

Additional Information

Intended Audience: clinical laboratory science students and medical technologists and technicians seeking review or continuing education opportunities. It is also appropriate medical students, pathology residents, and pathologists.
Level of Instruction: Intermediate
Author Credentials: Garland E. Pendergraph, PhD, JD, MLS(ASCP)SM, HCLD/CC(ABB) is Laboratory Director & Director of Laboratory Operations, Quest Diagnostics-Valdosta RRL. Dr. Pendergraph is the laboratory director for Quest Diagnostics in Valdosta, GA and Miller County Hospital in Colquitt, GA. Dr. Pendergraph received his MSPH from the University of Kentucky in Lexington, his PhD in medical parasitology and mycology from the University of  North Carolina in Chapel Hill and his law degree with a concentration in health care law from Concord Law School, Kaplan University. He also did a Fellowship in Tropical Medicine at Louisiana State University School of Medicine. He is the author of a textbook in phlebotomy, a number of scientific articles, plus internet training programs. Dr. Pendergraph serves on the advisory committee for medical technology program at Thomas University. He is licensed as a laboratory director in the States of Georgia and Florida.

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inhalation anthrax

The international biohazard symbol