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Federal Information Centre for Biological Threats and Special Pathogens (IBBS)

Christian Herzog
Claudia Schulz-Weidhaas

The responsibility of the Federal Information Centre for Biological Threats and Special Pathogens (IBBS) is to strengthen national public health preparedness and response capabilities to biological threats caused by highly pathogenic or bioterrorism-related agents ("special pathogens"). IBBS provides support for the public health sector regarding recognition, situation assessment and response to unusual biological incidents related to bioterrorism or any natural occurrence or accidental release of highly pathogenic agents. Key aspects of activity are:


Preparedness and response planning for incidents related to special pathogens

  • Threat and risk assessment of highly pathogenic and bioterrorism-related agents
  • Risk analysis and development of risk mitigation strategies
  • Development of national preparedness and response guidelines
  • Assessment of needs for diagnostics, anti-infectious agents, vaccines and other pharmaceuticals
  • Single point of contact to the German "Permanent Working Group of Medical Competence and Treatment Centers" (Ständiger Arbeitskreis der Kompetenz- und Behandlungszentren für hochkontagiöse und lebensbedrohliche Erkrankungen, STAKOB)
  • Collaboration with national and international public health and security authorities
  • Information of the public health sector
  • Information on biological threats and special pathogens
  • Advanced training for the public health sector handling incidents related to special pathogens
  • Development of innovative concepts to inform and train public health experts
  • Studies in crisis communication

Response to bioterrorism or any unusual biological incident caused by special pathogens

  • Early warning system for unusual biological incidents
  • Public health risk assessment during such an event
  • Analysis of unusual outbreaks of infectious diseases in collaboration with the department for infectious disease epidemiology
  • Reporting to political decision makers
  • Assist and support state and local public health authorities during an event
  • Cooperation with relevant national and international authorities and institutions.

Date: 09.05.2020