Bioterrorism and Emergency Preparedness in Aging (BTEPA): HRSA-funded GEC collaboration for curricula and training.

Frail elders living alone or in long-term care settings are particularly vulnerable to bioterrorism and other emergencies due to their complex physical, social and psychological needs. This paper provides an overview of the recent literature on bioterrorism and emergency preparedness in aging (BTEPA); discusses federal initiatives by the health resources and services administration (HRSA) to address BTEPA; describes the collaborative efforts of six HRSA-funded geriatric education centers (GECS) to develop BTEPA geriatric curricula and training; and offers recommendations for BTEPA education and training, clinical practices, policy, and research. The GEC/BTEPA collaboration has produced model curricula, including emergency planning for diverse groups of older persons; enhanced networking among stakeholders in a fast paced environment of information sharing and changing policies; and developed interdisciplinary educational resources and approaches to address emergency preparedness for various settings in the elder care continuum.