The Defense and Health Ministries are preparing to hold a two-day drill starting Wednesday to test Israel's preparedness for an unconventional terror attack. The exercise, titled "Orange Flame 6," will examine the possibility of an outbreak of an infectious disease in northern cities.
The drill is part of a series of exercises planned by the Defense Ministry. Another drill, scheduled for January, will simulate a radiological attack on Haifa.
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As part of Tuesday's event, fake patients are to flood northern hospitals presenting the symptoms of a suspicious illness. The medical crews will practice responding quickly to a biological attack, while an inter-ministerial committee will train on managing a national crisis.
Simulated attack (Archive photo: Hagai Aharon)
Quarantining entire regions and distributing vaccinations are just some of the possible strategies the state could implement should an agent the likes of anthrax or chicken pox be unleased on Israel's population.
On Thursday, the second day of the drill, local authorities will open clinics that simulate the treatment of civilians infected in the biological attack. Each center will practice treating some 5,000 patients a day.
Experts estimate that if such an epidemic breaks out, thousands of healthy citizens will arrive at hospitals fearing that they have been infected, overloading the medical crews and preventing the sick from getting treatment.
Home Front Command, hospitals, clinics, local authorities, the police and fire departments will take part in the drill, among other national establishments.
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