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Volume 9, Number 8—August 2003


Detecting Bioterror Attacks by Screening Blood Donors: A Best-Case Analysis

Edward H. Kaplan*Comments to Author , Christopher A. Patton†, William P. FitzGerald†, and Lawrence M. Wein‡
Author affiliations: *Yale School of Management and Yale Medical School, New Haven, Connecticut, USA; †American Red Cross, Arlington, Virginia, USA; ‡Stanford University, Stanford, California, USA

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Table 2

False-alarm rates with test specificities as showna

          Specificity (s)           Annual false-alarm rate (FAR)
          0.9999           1,390

aIf one assumes 13.9 million annual blood donations tested, an average of one bioterror attack per year that infects 1,000 persons with a noncontagious agent, and a 1-month response and recovery period during which infected donations continue to arrive.

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