5 Careers in Bioterrorism

Those interested in public health might find one of these bioterrorism careers highly lucrative and rewarding. Many of these jobs involve working with very important people and at times will involve very meaningful, high profile work. Many find work in this field very rewarding in every sense.

1. Bioterrorism Researcher

Bioterrorism researchers are tasked with identifying unsecured health areas and working to improve them. There will be a fair amount of data gathering and analysis on determining areas where the public may be at risk. Samples of potential bioterror agents will be reviewed in a lab and a researcher is expected to advise government agencies on what kind of laws and policies need to be put into place. Frequently, researchers either attend or run seminars on bioterror topics to keep current, as new threats are always being developed and employed. Like in many bioterrorism careers, this job requires analytical skills and a good eye for detail. A Ph.D is usually required for this field.

2. Bioterrorism Coordinator

Bioterrorism coordinators are in charge of working with health departments of various communities and ensuring that they can handle any emergent health threats caused by bioterror. Those working in this position will be tasked with developing plans and manuals for each agency and making sure that local agencies have proper vaccines and drugs to deal with any given situation. Those wishing to be a coordinator will need a degree in public health or nursing along with two years of experience in the Public Health field. Those interested in bioterrorism careers that involve a fair amount of socializing gravitate toward this field.

3. Epidemiologist

An Epidemiologist is a scientist who studies disease outbreaks and are considered to be something of a “disease detective.” The job entails studying where outbreaks begin, how the disease flourishes and developing a treatment plan to eliminate the outbreak. An epidemiologist spends time collecting data and conducting research from clinical trials. Findings are often presented to the government and the public. Methodology is always being refined and an epidemiologist is often responsible for updating important protocols. Of all of the careers in bioterrorism, epidemiology is perhaps the mot accessible. A master’s degree in public health is often required to be an epidemiologist, but the CDC has a special fellowship program open to those with a bachelor’s degree. The average salary is $66,000.

4. Health Communications Specialist at the Center for Disease Control and Prevention

The Center for Disease Control is the American hub for all things bioterror. A health communications specialist is in charge of researching and monitoring public health problems, identifying epidemics and acting as a liason between scientists and government officials. The CDC is considered to be the most important place to work in the public health field, so the requirements are stringent. They hire promising students who have received a master’s degree in public health as well as skilled professionals. Health Communications specialists make as much as $120,000 a year and have access to a lot of perks including free health care.

5. Immunologist

Immunologists study the immune system of the human body, specializing in understanding and dealing with malfunctioning immune systems. Many immunologists spend their time in laboratories running tests and developing cures, vaccines and immunization formulas. The job involves creating new techniques to advance the field, collaborate with geneticists and scientists of various fields and run trials. Clinical immunologists work with patients to test and diagnose them. To become an immunologist, one must have completed medical school and a residency program involving extensive lab work to be considered for a position as an immunologist. Immunologists make about $150,000 per year on average.

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Bioterrorism careers are lucrative and rewarding. Those working in the field report great job satisfaction, as they feel they are making a difference. Due to the ongoing issues with terrorism in the wold, the field of bioterrorism is expected to grow for years to come.