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Department of Health & Human Services updates the North American Plan for Animal and Pandemic Influenza

Posted by Shivi Kakar

Jun 11, 2012 5:26:55 AM

Pandemic flu preparedness was the focus of the North American Plan for Animal and Pandemic Influenza  (NAPAPI) at a meeting of the North American Leaders Summit.  This preparedness plan seeks faster reactions to pandemic threats, through enhanced emergency preparedness, a more substantial reporting network for early detection, and early warning systems for outbreaks.

An update of the 2007 NAPAPI includes new information garnered from the Department of Health & Human Services' response to the 2009 H1N1 human influenza pandemic. Collaborative response plans for the United States, Canada, and Mexico are being developed in the face of potential new pandemics. Continued training and response efforts will center around surveillance, early warning systems, and timely investigations of flu viruses in humans and animals.

A balance is being sought to provide farther-reaching border policies that will not impede trade or travel, but will allow for medical countermeasures in the event of a North American pandemic.  Protection of infrastructures is also being stressed as critical, so that reciprocal assistance can be utilized across borders to help combat potential pandemics. “H1N1 provided a stern reminder that diseases don’t respect national borders and can spread rapidly in our interconnected world so protecting health requires cooperation and collaboration among countries,” explained Dr. Nicole Lurie, assistant secretary for preparedness and response in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and a rear admiral in the U.S. Public Health Service.

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Topics: Emilcott, General Industry H&S, General EHS, Animal and Pandemic Influenza, Department of Health & Human Services, pandemic threats

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