Contributions of the Regional Emerging Special Pathogen Treatment Centers to the US COVID-19 Pandemic Response

Jonathan D. Grein, Jennifer A. Garland, Christa Arguinchona, Maria G. Frank, Brian T. Garibaldi, Amanda Grindle, Angela Hewlett, Susan Kline, Corri B. Levine, Aneesh Mehta, Vikramjit Mukherjee, Lauren M. Sauer, Eileen F. Searle, Sharon Vanairsdale, Angela Vasa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


The National Emerging Special Pathogens Training and Education Center (NETEC) was established in 2015 to improve the capabilities of healthcare facilities to provide safe and effective care to patients with Ebola and other special pathogens in the United States. Through NETEC, a collaborative network of 10 Regional Emerging Special Pathogen Treatment Centers (RESPTCs) undertook readiness activities that included potential respiratory pathogens. These preparations, which took place before the COVID-19 pandemic, established a foundation of readiness that enabled RESPTCs to play a pivotal role in the US COVID-19 pandemic response. As initial COVID-19 cases were detected in the United States, RESPTCs provided essential isolation capacity, supplies, and subject matter expertise that allowed for additional time for healthcare systems to prepare. Through the Special Pathogen Research Network, RESPTCs rapidly enrolled patients into early clinical trials. During periods of high community transmission, RESPTCs provided educational, clinical, and logistical support to a wide range of healthcare and nonhealthcare settings. In this article, we describe how NETEC and the RESPTC network leveraged this foundation of special pathogen readiness to strengthen the national healthcare system's response to the COVID-19 pandemic. NETEC and the RESPTC network have proven to be an effective model that can support the national response to future emerging special pathogens.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S4-S12
JournalHealth Security
Issue numberS1
StatePublished - Jun 1 2022


  • Biodefense funding
  • Covid-19
  • Epidemic management/response
  • Hospital preparedness/response
  • Pandemic readiness
  • Special pathogens

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Safety Research
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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