Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM) Regional Catastrophic Preparedness Grant Program Regional Anthrax Response Tabletop Exercise


Ended December 2014


Susan Mongold, Director of Office of Training and Exercises

Address: 10501 Trade Court, North Chesterfield, VA 23236

Phone: 804-897-9980



The Olson Group, Ltd. (OGL) was the prime contractor for a multi-year exercise contract with the Commonwealth of Virginia. OGL was responsible for the development, logistics, conduct and evaluation of regional and statewide exercises addressing the full range of natural and man-made hazards.

As part of this program OGL developed, conducted, and evaluated a Tabletop Exercise for over 150 participants to discuss coordinated regional response operations in the aftermath of a widespread aerosolized anthrax attack via aircraft dispersal over the Hampton Roads, Virginia region. The exercise included stakeholders from dozens of cities and counties in the region. Professionals from local and Commonwealth departments of health, hospitals, emergency management agencies, emergency medical services, law enforcement, military, and federal agencies took part in the exercise.

A primary focus of exercise discussion was the execution, coordination, and communication of the epidemiological investigation. Participation from Commonwealth and county epidemiologists ensured that all participants gained significantly enhanced understandings regarding epidemiologic systems and processes during investigation and Public Health emergency response. OGL included a briefing by the Federal Bureau of Investigation Regional Weapons of Mass Destruction Coordinator to illustrate how intelligence and epidemiologic data is aggregated and analyzed to inform decision-making for Public Health officials at the local and Commonwealth level.

OGL developed a comprehensive evaluation and improvement plan that provided focus and strategies for enhanced coordination and communication between stakeholders to improve Public Health Disaster response within the Regional Catastrophic Grant Program catchment area.

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