Infection Prevention and Control of Epidemic- and Pandemic-Prone Acute Respiratory Infections in Health Care – WHO – 2014

Posted on July 8, 2014. Filed under: Infection Control, Infectious Diseases, Respiratory Medicine | Tags: , |

Infection Prevention and Control of Epidemic- and Pandemic-Prone Acute Respiratory Infections in Health Care – WHO – 2014

“Overview

This publication is an update to the World Health Organization (WHO) interim guidelines Infection prevention and control of epidemic- and pandemic-prone acute respiratory diseases in health care (2007). These updated guidelines incorporate the emergency guidance given in the WHO publication Infection prevention and control during health care for confirmed, probable, or suspected cases of pandemic (H1N1) 2009 virus infection and influenza-like illness (2009). The revision was informed by both evidence that has emerged since the first edition was published and the practical lessons learnt during the influenza pandemic in 2009.

The WHO guidelines Infection prevention and control of epidemic- and pandemic-prone acute respiratory infections in health care provide recommendations, best practices and principles for non-pharmacological aspects of infection prevention and control (IPC) for acute respiratory infections (ARI) in health care, with special emphasis on ARI that can present as epidemics or pandemics. The guidelines are intended to help policy-makers, administrators and health-care workers to prioritize effective IPC measures.

The document also provides guidance on the application of basic IPC precautions, such as Standard Precautions, and on the importance of maintaining appropriate IPC measures in routine circumstances to strengthen a healthcare facility’s capacity to put them into practice during outbreaks. These measures should therefore be part of the hospital’s permanent IPC strategy.”

 

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UK Influenza Pandemic Preparedness Strategy – 5 June 2014

Posted on June 6, 2014. Filed under: Infectious Diseases | Tags: , , |

UK Influenza Pandemic Preparedness Strategy – 5 June 2014

“Guidance on preparing for and responding to an influenza pandemic.

These updated scientific evidence base reviews cover The Use of Antivirals in an influenza pandemic, The Impact of Mass Gatherings on an influenza pandemic, The Use of Facemasks and Respirators during an Influenza Pandemic and The Impact of school closures on an influenza pandemic. They were commissioned by the Department of Health and undertaken by Public Health England. These reviews update and supplement the previous reviews undertaken in 2011 and continue to underpin the UK Influenza Pandemic Preparedness Strategy 2011.”

 

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Strengthening national health systems capacity to respond to future global pandemics – McMaster University Health Forum Issue Brief – 4 November 2013

Posted on January 30, 2014. Filed under: Health Mgmt Policy Planning, Health Policy, Infectious Diseases | Tags: , |

Strengthening national health systems capacity to respond to future global pandemics – McMaster University Health Forum Issue Brief – 4 November 2013

Edge J, Gauvin FP, Hoffman SJ, Lavis JN. Issue Brief: Strengthening National Health Systems’ Capacity to Respond to Future Global Pandemics. Hamilton, Canada: McMaster Health Forum, 4 November 2013.

Extract from the Key Messages

“What’s the problem?
The challenges to strengthening national health systems’ capacity to respond to future global pandemics of infectious disease can be understood by considering six manifestations of, or contributors to, the problem:
1) pandemics challenge conventional systems of governance;
2) timely information sharing and evidence-informed decision-making is difficult;
3) domestic and international partners often encounter coordination problems;
4) public health and animal health perspectives can be difficult to reconcile when addressing emerging zoonoses;
5) antimicrobial resistance represents a growing threat; and
6) risk and protective factors for pandemics are changing.

Moreover, existing programs, health system arrangements and implementation strategies may not be optimal:
o programs and plans may limit capacity to respond to future pandemics;
o health system arrangements complicate matters; and
o some previously agreed upon courses of action have not been fully implemented.

What do we know about three elements of a comprehensive approach to address the problem?”

… continues on the site

 

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Getting behind the curve, is the new NHS ready for pandemic flu? – Centre for Health and the Public Interest [UK] – 3 January 2014

Posted on January 10, 2014. Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: , |

Getting behind the curve, is the new NHS ready for pandemic flu? – Centre for Health and the Public Interest [UK] – 3 January 2014

“This report finds that reforms made to the NHS following the Health and Social Care Act of 2012 have impacted upon its ability to deal effectively with a possible flu pandemic. It highlights three potential problems which the new NHS now faces in dealing with a possible pandemic. A loss of expertise, personal relationships and institutional memory in dealing with public health emergencies from within the NHS as a result of the 2012 reforms, the lack of clear accountability arrangements and a ‘clear line of sight’ under the new system and the co-ordination of increasing numbers of private providers of NHS services in a health care system underpinned by contracts.”

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Pandemic influenza: Guidance on the management of death certification and cremation certification in a pandemic [UK] – 25 June 2012

Posted on June 26, 2012. Filed under: Infectious Diseases | Tags: |

Pandemic influenza: Guidance on the management of death certification and cremation certification in a pandemic [UK] – 25 June 2012

“This updated guidance document proposes changes to the procedures for death and cremation certification that could be used in a severe influenza pandemic. It would enable doctors to spend as much time as possible on the care of the living and to ensure that processes for death and cremation certification can be managed as effectively as possible during a pandemic.”

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Public Engagement on Facilitating Access to Antiviral Medications and Information in an Influenza Pandemic – Workshop Series Summary – Institute of Medicine – 17 May 2012

Posted on May 18, 2012. Filed under: Infectious Diseases | Tags: , , , |

Public Engagement on Facilitating Access to Antiviral Medications and Information in an Influenza Pandemic – Workshop Series Summary – Institute of Medicine – 17 May 2012

full text

“Influenza pandemics overwhelm health care systems with thousands or hundreds of thousands of sick patients, as well as those worried they may be sick. In order to ensure a successful response to the patient swell caused by a pandemic, robust planning is essential to prepare for challenges public health officials may face. This includes the need to quickly distribute and dispense antiviral medications that can reduce the severity and duration of disease to large numbers of people.

In response to a request from the CDC, the IOM’s Forum on Medical and Public Health Preparedness for Catastrophic Events held a series of workshops that explored the public’s perception of how to facilitate access to antiviral medications and treatment during an influenza pandemic. To help inform potential strategies still in the development stages at the CDC, workshops were held in Fort Benton, Montana; Chattanooga, Tennessee; and Los Angeles, California; during February and March 2012 to consider the usefulness of several alternative strategies of delivering antiviral medication to the public. Participants considered how the normal systems for prescribing and dispensing antiviral medications could be adjusted to ensure that the public has quick, safe, and equitable access to both potentially life-saving drugs and information about the pandemic and treatment options. This document summarizes the workshops.”

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Health and Social Care Influenza Pandemic Preparedness and Response – NHS – April 2012

Posted on April 23, 2012. Filed under: Infectious Diseases | Tags: |

Health and Social Care Influenza Pandemic Preparedness and Response – NHS – April 2012

“This document provides guidance on operational aspects of pandemic response in the health and social care sectors. It should be read in conjunction with the UK Influenza Pandemic Preparedness Strategy 2011. It reflects key changes set out in the strategy, incorporating lessons identified from the H1N1 (2009) influenza pandemic.”

It should be read together with the UK Influenza Pandemic Preparedness Strategy 2011.

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Pandemic Vaccine Distribution Policy for the Twenty-First Century – Homeland Security Affairs – 2012

Posted on February 29, 2012. Filed under: Infectious Diseases | Tags: , , |

Pandemic Vacscine Distribution Policy for the Twenty-First Century – Homeland Security Affairs – 2012

“Introduction

The nation’s response to the 2009 H1N1 Pandemic has been met with scrutiny, candor, and a collaborative effort among federal and state agencies, local public health authorities, associations, and experienced practitioners. The Institutes of Medicine and Center for Biosecurity have held conferences that have paved the way toward improving pandemic response.1 The workshop format used at these conferences resulted in the identification and exploration of issues relating to vaccine supply, administration, and distribution by both attendees and panelists. However, after-action vaccine distribution discussions failed to result in an overarching implementation strategy that could be linked to many elements of a coherent vaccine distribution strategy. This article presents a model that could serve as a conceptual framework for designing a pandemic vaccine distribution policy.”

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Review of Australia’s Health Sector Response to Pandemic (H1N1) 2009: Lessons Identified – Australian Department of Health and Ageing – October 2011

Posted on November 16, 2011. Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: |

Review of Australia’s Health Sector Response to Pandemic (H1N1) 2009: Lessons Identified – Australian Department of Health and Ageing – October 2011

Print ISBN: 978-1-74241-551-2    Online ISBN: 978-1-74241-552-9

“This review examines the Australian health sector’s response to pandemic (H1N1) 2009 (the 2009 pandemic) in the context of what was planned for and what occurred during the response. The review identifies what worked well, as well as issues that require further consideration to strengthen the planning, management and operational aspects of pandemic health response arrangements in Australia. The recommendations included in this review accordingly focus on the issues identified. This review does not attempt to resolve these issues; an implementation process will be developed jointly with state and territory health officials through the Australian Health Protection Committee (AHPC).”

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A Survey of Ethical Principles and Guidance Within Selected Pandemic Plans – National Collaborating Centre for Healthy Public Policy [Canada] – June 2011

Posted on June 29, 2011. Filed under: Infectious Diseases | Tags: , , |

A Survey of Ethical Principles and Guidance Within Selected Pandemic Plans – National Collaborating Centre for Healthy Public Policy [Canada] – June 2011

“This document provides a survey of the explicit goals, ethical principles, and ethics-related recommendations put forward by a selection of national, sub-national and international pandemic preparedness plans and policies.

Moral theories and concepts draw attention to and encourage debate on the variety of ends, goals, and means that can be adopted in preparing for and responding to public health emergencies.

This survey provides a concise comparison of several ethical frameworks in order to help us to think about how we might deliberate to justify difficult decisions in the context of an actual public health emergency.”

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Public Health Ethics. Selected Resources: Ethics in a Pandemic – National [Canadian] Collaborating Centre for Healthy Public Policy – May 2011

Posted on May 31, 2011. Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Public Hlth & Hlth Promotion | Tags: , , |

Public Health Ethics. Selected Resources: Ethics in a Pandemic – National [Canadian] Collaborating Centre for Healthy Public Policy – May 2011

“This document is based on a review of the literature on this subject carried out by the NCCHPP between May and August of 2009.

It contains a selection of relevant, representative, and accessible works that together provide a foundation for exploring the ethical implications of infectious disease control and pandemic response. In it, you will find:

• Short summaries of a selection of seminal papers, frameworks and guidelines;
• Links to additional resources on ethics and pandemics, including articles, presentations, case studies and other learning tools, and pertinent websites, blogs, and news sources.”

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Landmark agreement improves global preparedness for influenza pandemics – WHO – 17 April 2011

Posted on April 21, 2011. Filed under: Infectious Diseases | Tags: , |

Landmark agreement improves global preparedness for influenza pandemics – WHO – 17 April 2011

17 April 2011 | Geneva – “After a week of negotiations continued through Friday night and into Saturday morning, an open-ended working-group meeting of Member States successfully agreed upon a framework to ensure that in a pandemic, influenza virus samples will be shared with partners who need the information to take steps to protect public health.

The working-group meeting was convened under the authority of the World Health Assembly and coordinated by WHO.”

…continues on the site

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Pandemic Flu – National Planning Assumptions Assessments Tool – Cabinet Office UK – 1 March 2011

Posted on March 18, 2011. Filed under: Infectious Diseases | Tags: |

Pandemic Flu – National Planning Assumptions Assessments Tool – Cabinet Office UK – 1 March 2011

“To assist local planners in their planning and preparations for an influenza pandemic central government has developed a tool to facilitate the application of National Planning assumptions to the local setting.”

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Preventing Transmission of Pandemic Influenza and Other Viral Respiratory Diseases: Personal Protective Equipment for Healthcare Personnel Update 2010 – Institute of Medicine [US] – Released: 27 January 2011

Posted on January 28, 2011. Filed under: Infection Control, Infectious Diseases, Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu, Workforce | Tags: , , |

Preventing Transmission of Pandemic Influenza and Other Viral Respiratory Diseases: Personal Protective Equipment for Healthcare Personnel Update 2010 – Institute of Medicine [US] – Released: 27 January 2011

Full text online

“In light of the unanswered research questions following the 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic, the National Personal Protective Technology Laboratory at the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) asked the IOM to assess the progress of PPE research and to identify future directions for PPE for healthcare personnel. While the IOM finds that there are gaps and deficiencies in the research about PPE use in health care, there is sufficient knowledge to recommend a four-pronged strategy for effective PPE use:

Deliberate planning and preparation at the leadership and organizational levels
Comprehensive training for all personnel, including supervisors and managers
Widespread and convenient availability of appropriate PPE devices
Accountability at all levels of the organization

The IOM also offers several recommendations for continuing the momentum of PPE research that are detailed in the report and the report brief. The more scientists and researchers know about how to maximize the effectiveness of PPE and its use, the more prepared we will be for the next influenza pandemic.”

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2010 Pandemic Vaccination Survey: summary results – AIHW – 10 September 2010

Posted on September 10, 2010. Filed under: Infectious Diseases | Tags: , , |

2010 Pandemic Vaccination Survey: summary results – AIHW – 10 September 2010

“This report presents results from the 2010 Pandemic Vaccination Survey conducted in January and February 2010 by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. The report provides estimates of swine flu vaccination uptake by Australians, along with the motivation for, and barriers to, vaccination. The survey showed that the swine flu vaccine uptake as of February 2010 was estimated at 18.1% (or about 3.9 million people). Some of the reasons why people wanted to get vaccinated include the seriousness of swine flu (24.7%), doctor’s advice (16.8%), employment-related reasons (13.7%) and being in an ‘at risk’ group (10.9%).”

Authored by AIHW.

Published 10 September 2010; ISBN-13 978-1-74249-056-4; AIHW cat. no. PHE 128; 44pp

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Report to the President on Reengineering the Influenza Vaccine Production Enterprise to Meet the Challenges of Pandemic Influenza – White House – 19 August 2010

Posted on August 25, 2010. Filed under: Infectious Diseases | Tags: , , |

Report to the President on Reengineering the Influenza Vaccine Production Enterprise to Meet the Challenges of Pandemic Influenza – White House – 19 August 2010

Press release

President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology Releases Plan to Improve Nation’s Vaccine Response Against Pandemic Influenza and Other Outbreaks Improvements Could Cut Several Weeks Off Vaccine Production, Save Thousands of Lives.

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Pandemic Influenza Preparedness Programme Team, social care flu resilience social care self-assessment tool – UK – 30 June 2010

Posted on July 8, 2010. Filed under: Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: |

Pandemic Influenza Preparedness Programme Team, social care flu resilience social care self-assessment tool – UK –

Document type: Publication
Author: Department of Health
Published date: 30 June 2010

“This report contains the results of the social care self assessment tool issued to local authorities (LAs) with social services responsibilities in England in October 2009. The results will help LAs in reviewing and improving their pandemic preparedness plans.”

Download Pandemic Influenza Preparedness Programme Team social care flu resilience, social care self-assessment tool (PDF, 293K)

Download executive summary (PDF, 53K)

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Report of the Swine Flu Critical Care Clinical Group and Key Learning Points for Future Surge Planning – UK – 1 July 2010

Posted on July 8, 2010. Filed under: Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: |

Report of the Swine Flu Critical Care Clinical Group and Key Learning Points for Future Surge Planning – UK – 1 July 2010

Document type: Report
Author: Department of Health
Pages: 48

The Critical care report builds on the work undertaken during the 2009/10 swine flu pandemic to increase critical care capacity. The report incorporates key learning points for future surge planning. The most important is the recommended work for critical care networks, which must be robust and well prepared as the essential foundation for any response for surge in demand.

Download Report of the Swine Flu Critical Care Clinical Group (PDF, 415K)

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The Domestic and International Impacts of the 2009-H1N1 Influenza A Pandemic: Global Challenges, Global Solutions: Workshop Summary – 28 June 2010

Posted on July 2, 2010. Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: , , |

The Domestic and International Impacts of the 2009-H1N1 Influenza A Pandemic: Global Challenges, Global Solutions: Workshop  Summary
Institute of Medicine (US) Forum on Microbial Threats
nap12799
Created: June 28, 2010.

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New Zealand Influenza Pandemic Plan: A framework for action – April 2010

Posted on May 18, 2010. Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Public Hlth & Hlth Promotion | Tags: , |

New Zealand Influenza Pandemic Plan: A framework for action
Date of publication (online): April 2010
ISBN number: 978-0-478-35907-7 (Online)
HP number: 5049
Citation: Ministry of Health. 2010. New Zealand Influenza Pandemic Plan: A framework for action. Wellington:Ministry of Health.

Summary of publication

Sets out the all of government measures to be taken to prepare for and respond to an influenza pandemic.

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Pandemic influenza: summary infection control guidance for ambulance services during an influenza pandemic – UK – 8 January 2010

Posted on January 12, 2010. Filed under: Infection Control, Infectious Diseases, Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: , |

Pandemic influenza: summary infection control guidance for ambulance services during an influenza pandemic – UK – 8 January 2010

Document type: Guidance
Author: Department of Health
Published date: 8 January 2010
Pages: 25

“The purpose of this document is to set out concise summary guidance for infection control for the ambulance services and it is intended for use during the pandemic. The guidance in this document is equally applicable to lay responders, who should adopt the same infection control and hygiene measures.

This guidance document includes sections on patient management, infection control precautions, use of personal protective equipment (PPE) and environmental infection control, as well as occupational health.”

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Pandemic (H1N1) influenza: a summary of guidance for infection control in healthcare settings – UK – 8 January 2010

Posted on January 12, 2010. Filed under: Infection Control, Infectious Diseases, Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: |

Pandemic (H1N1) influenza:  a summary of guidance for infection control in healthcare settings  – 8 January 2010

Document type: Guidance
Author: Department of Health and Health Protection Agency
Published date: 8 January 2010
Pages: 32

Supersedes/replaces: Pandemic influenza: guidance for infection control in hospitals and primary care settings

“This document is an updated version of Pandemic flu: A summary of guidance for infection control in health care settings issued in September 2007. It is specific to the current pandemic influenza virus, pandemic (H1N1), and thus represents current guidance.

This document is based on the currently available virological and epidemiological knowledge about pandemic (H1N1) influenza and includes new or updated information regarding:

transmission characteristics of pandemic (H1N1) influenza aerosol-generating procedures occupational health: deployment of staff at high risk of complications from influenza setting-specific guidance for mortuaries and dental surgeries.The guidance document has been written for the NHS, but the infection control principles apply to other settings delivering healthcare.”

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Developing Psychosocial Resilience: How to cope in a crisis [eg pandemics] – UK Dept of Health – 16 December 2009

Posted on December 29, 2009. Filed under: Emergency Medicine, Infectious Diseases, Mental Health Psychi Psychol | Tags: , |

Developing Psychosocial Resilience: How to cope in a crisis [eg pandemics] – UK Dept of Health

Document type: Guidance
Author: [UK] Department of Health
Published date: 16 December 2009

The audience for this training module will be:

•Members of Pandemic Influenza coordination committees
•Chief executives of health boards; health authorities & primary and secondary care organisations
•Staff working in Mental Health services
•Ambulance services/trusts
•Medical directors
•Nurse directors
•Heads of midwifery
•Directors of public health
•Directors of human resources
•Directors of workforce and organisational development
•Heads of occupational health departments
•Heads of clinical services
•SHA/LA Flu Leads, Emergency planners
•Primary & secondary care clinicians
•Local authorities
•Private & voluntary sector providers
•Allied Health Professionals Leads

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Mass Medical Care with Scarce Resources – The Essentials – September 2009

Posted on November 10, 2009. Filed under: Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu, Public Hlth & Hlth Promotion | Tags: , |

Mass Medical Care with Scarce Resources – The Essentials – September 2009

“This guide from Department of Health & Human Services’ (HHS) Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) can help community planners prepare for public health emergencies, such as pandemic flu, when demand for medical resources outweighs supply. The guide includes information on ethical and legal issues, and on the provision of services to address pre-hospital, acute hospital care, alternative care sites, and palliative care during a public health emergency.

To illustrate how to apply these basic principles, the guide includes a special section on influenza pandemic preparedness. This new guide is an abbreviated version of Mass Medical Care with Scarce Resources, published by AHRQ in 2007.”

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WHO Guidelines for Pharmacological Management of Pandemic (H1N1) 2009 Influenza and other Influenza Viruses – 20 August 2009

Posted on August 25, 2009. Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: , , |

WHO Guidelines for Pharmacological Management of Pandemic (H1N1) 2009 Influenza and other Influenza Viruses
Publication date: 20 August 2009

“The purpose of this document is to provide a basis for advice to clinicians on the use of the currently available antivirals for patients presenting with illness due to influenza virus infection as well the potential use of the medicines for chemoprophylaxis. The document addresses specifically the two neuraminidase inhibitors oseltamivir and zanamivir, and the two M2 inhibitors amantadine and rimantadine. It includes recommendations on the use of some other potential pharmacological treatments. While the focus of the document is on management of patients with pandemic influenza (H1N1) 2009 virus infection, the document includes guidance on the use of the antivirals for other seasonal influenza virus strains, and for infections due to novel influenza A virus strains. WHO recommends that country and local public health authorities issue local guidance for clinicians from time to time that places these recommendations in the context of epidemiological and antiviral susceptibility data on the locally circulating influenza strains.

This guidance expands on the recommendations published in May 2009 titled “Clinical management of human infection with new influenza A (H1N1) virus: Initial guidance”. The recommendations are based on a review of data obtained with previously circulating strains, and treatment of human H5N1 influenza virus infections. It is anticipated that as the prevalence and severity of the current epidemic changes, further information will become available that may warrant revision of the recommendations.”

Download the document [pdf 984kb]

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Pandemic flu: planning and responding to primary care capacity challenges – UK – August 2009

Posted on August 24, 2009. Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: |

Pandemic flu: planning and responding to primary care capacity challenges

New guidance has been published for PCTs on how to deliver primary care services whilst potentially short staffed and how to cope with increased patient demand during the pandemic and the anticipated seasonal flu.

UK Department of Health – publications

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A National Agenda for Public Health Systems Research on Emergency Preparedness – RAND Corporation – August 2009

Posted on August 17, 2009. Filed under: Disaster Management, Health Mgmt Policy Planning, Public Hlth & Hlth Promotion, Research | Tags: , |

A National Agenda for Public Health Systems Research on Emergency Preparedness – RAND Corporation – August
By: Joie Acosta, Christopher Nelson, Ellen Burke Beckjord, Shoshana R. Shelton, Erin Murphy, Kristin J. Leuschner, Jeffrey Wasserman    126 p.    Document Number: TR-660-DHHS    2009

“Improving public health emergency preparedness is at the top of the national agenda, but the lack of frequent opportunities to observe and learn from real-world responses to large-scale public health emergencies has hindered the development of an adequate evidence base. As a result, efforts to develop performance measures and standards, best practices, program guidance, training, and other tools have proceeded without a strong empirical and analytical basis. The Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response asked RAND to facilitate the development of a public health systems research agenda for emergency preparedness, identify short- and long-term research priorities, and provide a basis for coordinating funders and researchers inside and outside the federal government. In response, RAND convened a panel of 13 experts representing a diverse range of perspectives. The panelists identified 20 research priorities and illustrative research questions in areas related to planning, response, resources and infrastructure, and accountability and improvement. Preparations for the panel discussion included an extensive literature review of peer-reviewed sources and statutes, policies, and other government and organizational reports.”

Full Document
(File size 1.8 MB, 7 minutes modem, < 1 minute broadband)
Download PDF Summary Only
(File size 0.1 MB, < 1 minute modem, < 1 minute broadband)

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Swine flu pandemic advice – UK Care Quality Commission – 12 August 2009

Posted on August 17, 2009. Filed under: Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: , |

Swine flu pandemic advice – UK Care Quality Commission
12 August 2009

“We have developed advice for care providers during the swine flu pandemic.

Health and adult social care regulations continue to apply during a flu pandemic, unless otherwise announced by the Department of Health. This situation is being kept under review and may change.

Please refer to the National Pandemic Flu Service for all the latest information and advice on swine flu:

We have also developed some specific questions and answers for care providers:

* information for social care providers
* information for healthcare providers

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Risk Communication in the Early Stages of the H1N1 (Swine Flu) Alert – How Effective Were State and Local Public Health Departments? – US – August 2009

Posted on August 14, 2009. Filed under: Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu, Public Hlth & Hlth Promotion | Tags: , , |

Risk Communication in the Early Stages of the H1N1 (Swine Flu) Alert – How Effective Were State and Local Public Health  Departments?
By: Jeanne S. Ringel, Elizabeth Trentacost, Nicole Lurie

Presents an assessment of how effectively state and local health departments communicated information regarding the April 2009 H1N1 virus (swine flu) outbreak via the Web to their constituents.

RAND Corporation   3 p.    Document Number: RB-9466   Year: 2009

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Pandemic vaccine priority for most at risk – UK – 13 August 2009

Posted on August 14, 2009. Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: , , |

Pandemic vaccine priority for most at risk
13 August 2009 17:25
UK  Department of Health   (National)

“More than 11 million people in England will be targeted first

The priority groups who will be first in line for vaccination against swine flu will include pregnant women, frontline health and social care workers, and everyone in at-risk groups aged over six months, Health Secretary Andy Burnham announced today.

This follows advice from independent experts on who should be first in line for vaccination.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation reviewed the evidence and advised the Department of Health on the crucial risk groups to be offered vaccination in order to reduce the rate or possibility of serious illness.

This advice was also scrutinised and endorsed by the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE).”

… continues on the website

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Exercise Cold Play II – pandemic planning exercise – UK – 13 August 2009

Posted on August 13, 2009. Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: |

Exercise Cold Play II

Document type:      Guidance
Author:   UK Department of Health
Published date:    13 August 2009
Primary audience:  Health and social care professionals

“Exercise Cold Play II is a Department of Health funded exercise designed as an ‘off the shelf’ package for use by health organisations and partner organisations within the UK. It has been developed from experience gained in previous pandemic influenza exercises and is intended to provide a generic format which can be adapted to suit the selected target audience. This exercise has been updated from the original Cold Play to ensure it is in-line with the Department of Health Pandemic Influenza Plan 2007.”

Download Exercise Cold Play II – guidance handbook (PDF, 130K)

Download Cold Play II – presentation (PPT, 286K)

Download Cold Play II – model spreadsheeet (XLS, 43K)

Download Scenario and questions (PDF, 132K)

Download Action plans / Lessons identified – template (RTF, 844K)

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Pandemic influenza: guidance on meeting the needs of those who are or may become vulnerable during the pandemic – UK – 5 August 2009

Posted on August 6, 2009. Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: , |

Pandemic influenza: guidance on meeting the needs of those who are or may become vulnerable during the pandemic

Document type:      Guidance
Author:   UK  Department of Health
Published date:      5 August 2009
Pages:      22

This is an update of draft guidance published in August 2008. This updated guidance is to support organisations in their planning for those people who are or may become vulnerable during the pandemic.

Full text of the pandemic influenza guidance

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Influenza Pandemic: Gaps in Pandemic Planning and Preparedness Need to Be Addressed – US GAO – 29 July 2009

Posted on July 31, 2009. Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: , |

Influenza Pandemic: Gaps in Pandemic Planning and Preparedness Need to Be Addressed – Statement of Bernice Steinhardt Director, Strategic Issues, US Government Accountability Office – 29 July 2009  30p.

Why GAO Did This Study

As the current H1N1 outbreak underscores, an influenza pandemic remains a real threat to our nation. Over the past 3 years, GAO conducted a body of work, consisting of 12 reports and 4 testimonies, to help the nation better prepare for a possible pandemic. In February 2009, GAO synthesized the results of most of this work and, in June 2009, GAO issued an additional report on agency accountability for protecting the federal workforce in the event of a pandemic. GAO’s work points out that while a number of actions have been taken to plan for a pandemic, including developing a national strategy and implementation plan, many gaps in pandemic planning and preparedness still remain.

This statement covers six thematic areas: (1) leadership, authority, and coordination; (2) detecting threats and managing risks; (3) planning, training, and exercising; (4) capacity to respond and recover; (5) information sharing and communication; and (6) performance and accountability.

What GAO Recommends

This statement discusses the status of GAO’s prior recommendations on the nation’s planning and preparedness for a pandemic. Key open recommendations concern the need to exercise the shared federal leadership roles for a pandemic, address planning gaps at all levels of government and in the private sector, and monitor and report on agencies’ plans to protect their workers.”

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National Pandemic Flu Service launched as England reaches 100,000 new cases – 23 July 2009

Posted on July 24, 2009. Filed under: Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: |

National Pandemic Flu Service launched as England reaches 100,000 new cases from:  The British Journal of Healthcare Computing and Information Management    23 July 2009

“The National Pandemic Flu Service was launched this afternoon by Health Secretary Andy Burnham. The new service is a dedicated website and phone line for people to check their symptoms and get a unique number which will give them access to antivirals if necessary. The service is only for England at the moment, with the other regions of the UK using existing services for advice (see below for details).

The website was overloaded shortly after being launched, no doubt due to the intense media interest, and links off the home page displayed a holding page asking people to return later.

The service was launched with announcement of the latest weekly pandemic flu update from the Health Protection Agency (HPA). The HPA reported that there were an estimated 100,000 new cases of swine flu in England in the last week (estimate range is +/- 40%). The figure has to be estimated based on clinical diagnosis by GPs as there is no longer laboratory confirmation of infection, so many cases may not be swine flu but other common infections that give similar symptoms such as sore throat.”

…continues on the website

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Psychosocial care for NHS staff during an influenza pandemic – 22 July 2009

Posted on July 23, 2009. Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: , , |

Psychosocial care for NHS staff during an influenza pandemic

Document type:      Guidance
Author:  UK  Department of Health
Published date:      22 July 2009
Pages:      12

“The purpose of the guidance is to set out the psychosocial care strategy that NHS and social care organisations need to have in place for supporting staff resilience. The guidance emphasises the need to manage the psychosocial resilience in NHS staff who are working over a sustained period on flu pandemic.

* It will ensure that appropriate staff are available to work during the indeterminate period of the flu pandemic
* It will support staff to achieve a swift recovery phase back to normal services

As the NHS Operating Framework requires all NHS organisations to have robust plans to respond to a flu pandemic in place by the end of 2008. The guidance advises the following actions to facilitate that process for the immediate future and beyond:

* Identifies the factors that influences physical, psychosocial and mental health of staff to enable organisations pre-empt through forward planning
* The psychosocial guidance document suggests actions to support and monitor the various levels of the strategy.
* Within the framework for delivering psychosocial care for staff reaffirms the importance of preparation and aims to assure that staff will be resilient.”

Download Psychosocial care for NHS staff during an influenza pandemic (PDF, 159K)

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Pandemic flu: ensuring the NHS is ready – NHS confederation briefing – 13 July 2009

Posted on July 14, 2009. Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: , |

Pandemic flu: ensuring the NHS is ready – NHS confederation briefing – 13 July 2009 – 6 p.

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Pandemic Potential of a Strain of Influenza A (H1N1) : Early Findings – article from Science 11 May 2009

Posted on May 12, 2009. Filed under: Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: , |

Pandemic Potential of a Strain of Influenza A (H1N1) : Early Findings – article in Science
Christophe Fraser 1, Christl A. Donnelly 1, Simon Cauchemez 1, William P. Hanage 1, Maria D. Van Kerkhove 1, T. Déirdre Hollingsworth 1, Jamie Griffin 1, Rebecca F. Baggaley 1, Helen E. Jenkins 1, Emily J. Lyons 1, Thibaut Jombart 1, Wes R. Hinsley 1, Nicholas C. Grassly 1, Francois Balloux 1, Azra C. Ghani 1, Neil M. Ferguson 1*, Andrew Rambaut 2, Oliver G. Pybus 3, Hugo Lopez-Gatell 4, Celia M Apluche-Aranda 5, Ietza Bojorquez Chapela 4, Ethel Palacios Zavala 4, Dulce Ma. Espejo Guevara 6, Francesco Checchi 7, Erika Garcia 7, Stephane Hugonnet 7, Cathy Roth 7, The WHO Rapid Pandemic Assessment Collaboration

Published Online May 11, 2009
Science DOI:    http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/science.1176062
Submitted on May 5, 2009
Accepted on May 11, 2009

1 MRC Centre for Outbreak Analysis & Modelling, Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, Imperial College London, Faculty of Medicine, Norfolk Place, London W2 1PG, UK.
2 Institute of Evolutionary Biology, University of Edinburgh, Ashworth Laboratories Edinburgh EH9 3JT, UK.
3 Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, South Parks Road, Oxford OX1 3PS, UK.
4 Directorate General of Epidemiology, FCO. De P. Miranda 177 5th Floor, Mexico City, 01480, Mexico.
5 National Institute of Epidemiological Diagnosis and Reference, Prolongación Carpio No. 470 (3° piso), Col Santo Tomás, México City, C.P. 11340, Mexico.
6 Secretaría de Salud – Servicios de Salud de Veracruz Soconusco No. 36 Colonia Aguacatal C.P. 910 Xalapa, Veracruz, México State.
7 World Health Organization, 20 Av. Appia, 1211 Geneva, Switzerland.

To whom correspondence should be addressed.
Neil M. Ferguson , E-mail: neil.ferguson@imperial.ac.uk
These authors contributed equally to this work.
All authors are members of this collaboration.

“A novel influenza A (H1N1) virus has spread rapidly across the globe. Judging its pandemic potential is difficult with limited data, but nevertheless essential to inform appropriate health responses. By analyzing the outbreak in Mexico, early data on international spread, and viral genetic diversity, we make an early assessment of transmissibility and severity. Our estimates suggest that 23,000 (range 6,000-32,000) individuals had been infected in Mexico by late April, giving an estimated case fatality ratio (CFR) of 0.4% (range 0.3% to 1.5%) based on confirmed and suspect deaths reported to that time. In a community outbreak in the small community of La Gloria, Veracruz no deaths were attributed to infection, giving an upper 95% bound on CFR of 0.6%. Thus while substantial uncertainty remains, clinical severity appears less than that seen in 1918 but comparable with that seen in 1957. Clinical attack rates in children in La Gloria were twice that in adults (<15 years-of-age: 61%, ≥15: 29%). Three different epidemiological analyses gave R0 estimates in the range 1.4-1.6, while a genetic analysis gave a central estimate of 1.2. This range of values is, consistent with 14 to 73 generations of human-to-human transmission having occurred in Mexico to late April. Transmissibility is therefore substantially higher than seasonal flu, and comparable with lower estimates of R0 obtained from previous influenza pandemics.”

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