Protecting Workers from Anthrax

CDC’s National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health has recommendations for protecting workers from anthrax, including personal protective measures and laboratory biosafety. Instructor training is also available.

Workers who may be at risk for anthrax include farmers, veterinarians, livestock handlers, diagnostic laboratory workers, and those who work with animal products.

Anthrax infections occur naturally in wild and unvaccinated domestic animals in many countries including the United States. Workers can be infected if they are exposed to infected animals or to meat or products (such as wool or hides) made from infected animals.

People working in laboratories may also be exposed to anthrax if proper safety precautions are not followed. Emergency response workers, including law enforcement, public health, and healthcare workers, are also at risk of exposure if B. anthracis is used as a biological weapon.

Shearing wool from a sheep.

Additional Information