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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Threat Analysis and Portfolio Management

Division of Medical Countermeasures Strategy and Requirements

The MCSR Threat Analysis and Portfolio Management (TAPM) Branch works with PHEMCE partner agencies to assess threats, provide an end-to-end vision of medical countermeasures against specific threats, and determine the types of medical countermeasures that are needed for response to public health emergencies and other threats to national security.
The PHEMCE addresses the high-priority threats that are identified in the most recent PHEMCE Strategy and Implementation Plan.  While the PHEMCE is evolving toward capability-based approaches, it maintains the threat-based approaches needed to address these national health security hazards.   These threats are defined by various risk assessments and planning scenarios, including Material Threat Assessments (MTAs) and Terrorism Risk Assessments (TRAs).

Threat Assessments

TAPM works with partners from across the PHEMCE to define and assess threats that may require medical countermeasures. 
TAPM is responsible for the coordination and integration of Material Threat Assessments (MTAs).   DHS leads the development of MTAs, which project the number of individuals likely to be exposed to a threat agent in a plausible, high consequence scenario.  TAPM coordinates with partners to (1) reach a consensus on the type of scenario that is most appropriate for the MTA, (2) conduct modeling, (3) develop exposure profiles, and (4) communicate its findings to the PHEMCE.
TAPM also works with the DHS and BARDA‚Äôs Division of Analytical Decision Support (ADS), to update TRAs.  TRAs are comprehensive, quantitative assessments of terrorism risk within a specified threat type that are used to inform investments; aid in identifying threats, vulnerabilities and knowledge gaps; and support strategic risk management planning.  TAPM works with its partners to ensure that TRAs and MTAs align with PHEMCE processes. The Branch works closely with DHS to improve the process and update TRAs and MTAs, including an update of the Anthrax MTA. 

Capabilities Assessments and Resources

TAPM and CDC co-lead the All-Hazards Ventilator Working Group which completed an in-depth mechanical ventilation capabilities assessment, including a ground-breaking quantitative national ventilation operational capacity model in support of developing federal stockpiling targets for mechanical ventilators.  
TAPM also led the development the Anthrax Reference Book, a compendium of the considerable volume of technical sources of information used in support of anthrax countermeasure requirements development and policy support documents for the PHEMCE. 

PHEMCE Integrated Program Teams

TAPM manages the ten PHEMCE Integrated Program Teams (IPTs).   The IPT program areas include requirement-setting, assessment of advanced development and production issues, stockpiling, delivery and dispensing to the end user, adverse-event monitoring, communications, guidance and policy development, and evaluating MCM effectiveness.
PHEMCE IPTs are categorized functionally as either threat-based or cross-cutting. Threat-based IPTs include those for chemical, biological, radiological/nuclear, and emerging infectious diseases (including pandemic influenza). Cross-cutting IPTs address specific issues that span at least two threats; these currently include pediatric/obstetrics, diagnostic tools, broad-spectrum antimicrobial agents and MCM monitoring and assessment.  The figure below illustrates the interrelationships among the ten PHEMCE IPTs followed by a short description of the scope of responsibilities by functional category.

Figure: The Interrelationships of the PHEMCE IPTs

This diagram displays three different categories of integrated program teams (IPTs) and how they are interrelated.  In the center are the threat-based IPTs, which are chemical, radiological and nuclear, anthrax, botulism, smallpox, and viral hemorrhagic fever.  To the right of the center cluster of IPTs is a grouping of two cross-cutting IPTs, which are Peds and OB, and Diagnostics.  Both of these IPTs feed into all of the threat-based IPTs in the center.  To the left of the center cluster of IPTs is an IPT which is both threat-based and cross-cutting.  That IPT is broad spectrum antimicrobials.  This IPT feeds into radiological and nuclear, anthrax and botulism in the center and also into both cross-cutting IPTs on the far right.   

Threat-based IPTs

  • The Anthrax IPT addresses the development of medical countermeasures and mitigation strategies for the bacterium Bacillus anthracis.
  • The Chemical IPT addresses the development of medical countermeasures and mitigation strategies for nearly 150 chemical agent threats, including vesicants, nerve agents, and cyanide.
  • The Botulinum Toxin (Botulism) IPT addresses the development of medical countermeasures and mitigation strategies for all botulinum nerve toxin serotypes.
  • The Radiological and Nuclear Threats IPT addresses the development of medical countermeasures and mitigation strategies for response to radiological dispersal or exposure incidents and nuclear detonations, including consideration of internalized radionuclides, external radiation exposure, mechanical trauma, and thermal burn injuries.
  • The Smallpox IPT addresses the development of medical countermeasures and mitigation strategies for Variola major and Variola minor virus variants.
  • The Viral Hemorrhagic Fevers (VHF) IPT addresses medical countermeasures and mitigation strategies for  viruses that cause hemorrhagic fevers including filovirus threat agents.

Cross-cutting IPTs

  • The Pediatric and Obstetric IPT (PedsOB) addresses medical countermeasure needs associated with children and pregnant women.  The PedsOB IPT supports and assists all threat-based PHEMCE IPTs with strategies for identifying, developing, acquiring, deploying, and using high-priority medical countermeasures for children and pregnant women during large-scale public health emergencies.
  • The Diagnostics IPT provides development and integration of expertise on diagnostic issues for all threat-based PHEMCE IPTs, including strategies for identifying, developing, acquiring, deploying, and using high-priority medical diagnostic tools during large-scale public health emergencies.
  • The MCM Monitoring and Assessment IPT coordinates the monitoring and assessment of medical countermeasures through data collection and analysis during and after an emergency event to enable decision-making during present and future public health responses.

Cross-cutting and Threat-based IPT

  • The Broad-Spectrum Antimicrobials (BSA) IPT is a cross-cutting and threat-based IPT addressing  the considerations for utility of broad-spectrum antimicrobial agents.  In particular, MCMs  that can prevent or mitigate the infection caused by the following biological threat agents: Yersinia pestis, Francisella tularensis, Burkholderia mallei, Burkholderia pseudomallei, and Rickettsia prowazekii. The BSA IPT provides expertise regarding broad-spectrum antimicrobial issues to the Pediatric and Obstetric, Diagnostics, Radiological/Nuclear, Anthrax, and Botulism IPTs.

  • This page last reviewed: April 10, 2017