Mail carriers train in case of bioterrorism attack - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Mail carriers train in case of bioterrorism attack

SAN DEIEGO (KNSD/NBC) - San Diego is one of five cities developing a plan for U.S. Postal workers to deliver antibiotics in the event of a bio-terrorism attack.

The idea is that if there were an anthrax attack, postal carriers would deliver the antibiotics to homes, instead of citizens rushing to pharmacies or doctors' offices.

Anyone exposed to anthrax would need to receive an initial supply of antibiotics in 48 hours.

Richard Clark, director of toxicology for the UCSD Medical Center, said the National Postal Model could work.

"Not everybody has access to transportation," Clark said. "And we know that if everybody piled into a pharmacy or post office, they'd be overrun with people."

The federal government says direct residential delivery would make sure people in affected areas receive antibiotics as soon as possible after an attack, but Clark said there is a downside.

"All drugs have side effects and if you're allergic to the drug they've delivered to you, then you're out there by yourself without anybody around," he said.

San Diego County received a federal grant to test the National Postal Model.

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