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VIDEO: Perry Creates Infectious Disease Task Force

Task force to ensure Texas appropriately responds to infectious diseases.

At the Texas State Capitol, Gov. Rick Perry announced the creation of the Texas Task Force on Infectious Disease Preparedness and Response.


AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Gov. Rick Perry says he’s creating a state task force to ensure Texas appropriately responds to infectious diseases like the Ebola virus.

Perry on Monday announced the creation of the Task Force on Infectious Disease Preparedness and Response. It will be overseen by Dr. Brett Giroir, who’s the CEO of Texas A&M Health Science Center.

Perry also called on federal officials to implement screening procedures at all U.S. points of entry. Screeners would take the temperature of travelers and conduct other assessments to determine their overall health.

He says the task force will develop rapid-response plans when an outbreak is confirmed in the state.


(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


The task force will be comprised of Texas Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner Dr. Kyle Janek and Texas Department of State Health Services Commissioner Dr. David Lakey, as well as public health experts, epidemiologists and leadership from state agencies that would be involved in the response to a pandemic event. Members of the task force are as follows:

  • Dr. Gerald Parker: vice president, Public Health Preparedness and Response, Texas A&M Health Science Center. Dr. Parker will serve as deputy director of the task force.
  • Dr. Tammy Beckham: director, Texas Veterinary Medical Diagnostics Laboratory and the Institute for Infectious Animal Diseases, Texas A&M University
  • Dr. Peter Hotez: founding dean, National School of Tropical Medicine, Baylor College of Medicine; professor, Departments of Pediatrics and Molecular Virology & Microbiology; President, Sabin Vaccine Institute
  • Dr. Thomas Ksiazek: virologist and an expert in the field of Epidemiology/ecology and laboratory diagnosis of hemorrhagic fevers and arthropod-borne viral diseases, University of Texas Medical Branch Sealy Center for Vaccine Development
  • Dr. James LeDuc, Ph.D.: director, Galveston National Laboratory; professor of Microbiology and Immunology and director of the Program on Global Health, Institute for Human Infections and Immunity
  • Dr. Scott Lillibridge: professor of epidemiology and assistant dean, Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Public Health
  • Dr. Victoria Sutton: Associate Dean for Research and Faculty Development; Director, Center for Biodefense, Law and Public Policy, Texas Tech University School of Law
  • Richard Hyde: executive director, Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
  • Tim Irvine: executive director, Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs
  • Nim Kidd: chief, Texas Division of Emergency Management
  • Col. Steve McCraw: executive director, Texas Department of Public Safety
  • Maj. Gen. John Nichols: Adjutant General of the State of Texas
  • Lt. Gen. Joseph Weber: executive director, Texas Department of Transportation
  • Michael Williams: commissioner, Texas Education Agency

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