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Pandemic flu Preparation

 1

 

 Pandemic Flu Preparation & H5N1 Bird Flu

 Pandemic Flu Alert - H1N1 Swine Flu Viurs - Pandemic Flu Alert

H1N1 Swine Flu Virus

 
In response to the current H1N1 swine flu virus pandemic alert, we have dedicated a product page to offer the most technically advanced and effective solutions to control the spread of this new H1N1 virus, in all working environments.
REMEMBER
PREPARATION NOT PANIC is the key.
Be Ready.. Be Prepared
 
IT IS TIME FOR EVERYONE TO FIGHT BACK AGAINST THIS INFECTION.
 

 PAGE INDEX

Let's Talk  INFECTION CONTROL & PANDEMIC FLU PREPARATION
Free & Confidential Infection Control Advice For All Business

  

 

 

 

 

 
  
Overview 

Most experts believe that it is not a question of whether there will be another severe influenza pandemic, but when.
(Department of Health, 2005, Explaining pandemic flu: A guide from the Chief Medical Officer,)

We do not know what the virus is that will cause pandemic flu. What we do know is that Mother Nature has the recipe book and its just a matter of time before she starts cooking. If a new strain did hit the UK before a vaccine was created, Sir Liam Donaldson said an extra 50,000 would probably die and a death toll of 750,000 was "not impossible".
Sir Liam Donaldson speaking at the launch of his 2005 Annual Report, at the Royal College of Pathologists, Carlton Terrace, London, 21 July 2006.

A pandemic (worldwide epidemic) of Influenza remains a very real threat. Health experts, including the World Health Organization (WHO), have warned that a pandemic is inevitable and have advised public services to begin emergency planning accordingly.

The effects to UK businesses will run into billions of pounds, as up to 25% of the UK's workforce are expected to be effected by a global pandemic outbreak.

As of the 15th of February 2008 pandemic flu has become an issue of Health and Safety. The HSE has now issued guidance for businesses to prepare for a global flu pandemic

Businesses need to prepare for pandemic flu. These include:

  • Hotels
  • Schools
  • Child daycare centers
  • Residential homes
  • Public transport operators (coach/bus, rail, trams and aircraft)
  • All public area waiting rooms

PREPARATION NOT PANIC is the key. Following policies and procedures will help life to go on as normal as possible, whilst helping to protect your family and business when an outbreak does occur. The time to act is NOW.  contact ViRUSafe     Back to top

 What should we do?

Ensuring good hygiene and infection control practices through policies and procedures is an essential part of what we all must do in response to, and in preparation for a flu pandemic.

Training and education for the workforce is essential to help reduce the effects of a global outbreak.

To leave training of the workforce until a pandemic occurs is irresponsible.

ViRUSafe offer a range of solutions for all businesses, including infection control, staff training, equipment, recommended safe products and pandemic flu kits to prepare your business for a global flu pandemic or any viral/bacterial outbreak in the future.

All businesses are offered bespoke pandemic flu procedures and equipment, to reflect the needs of the individual business to control the spread of the virus in individual work environments.

Outbreak planning/risk management procedures and policies need to be put in place to ensure that your business has assessed the risks and needs of a pandemic flu outbreak. These include:

  • Social/economic disruption
  • Staff sickness
  • Communication procedures
  • Equipment and supplies (PPE and chemicals)
  • Staff training in infection control (routes of transmission, signs/symptoms of pandemic flu)
  • Risk assessments in relation to the above
  • All staff need to be given training and guidance as to how a pandemic flu outbreak will affect them at work, and the way your business will operate during the pandemic outbreak

 Contact ViRUSafe                                        Back to top

What is pandemic flu?

Pandemic flu is different from ordinary flu, because it occurs when a new flu virus emerges into the human population and spreads from human to human.

As it will be a new virus, the entire population of the world will be susceptible, because no one will have any immunity to it. The lack of immunity in the population will mean that the virus has the potential to spread very quickly between people. This will result in many more people becoming severely ill. The circumstances exist now for a new virus to emerge and spread around the world.

Contact ViRUSafe                                        Back to top

What is bird flu?

Avian Influenza or 'bird flu' is a highly contagious disease of birds.

In birds the viruses can have a range of symptoms from mild illness and low mortality, to a highly contagious disease with a near 100% fatality rate.

There are many different subtypes of the bird flu virus. The most virulent are called Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI).

other avian subtypes - H9 and H7 - have caused illness in people, but neither has caused outbreaks in poultry as severe as H5N1-related ones. Contact ViRUSafe

 

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Facts about H5N1 (bird flu)

Avian Influenza or 'bird flu' (called H5N1) has affected poultry flocks and other birds in several countries since 2003.

As of 19th June 2008, 385 people have caught this infection, as a result of close and direct contact with infected birds. Of these 243 have subsequently died.

Concerns remain that the virus might develop the ability to pass easily from person to person. The concerns surrounding H5N1 (bird flu) is that it typically produces a severe life-threatening Pneumonia, whereasIinfluenza flu strains such as H7N7 produces mainly conjunctivitis and mild respiratory illness.

H5N1 currently, poses the greatest concern for human health.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there is mounting evidence that the H5N1 strain has a unique capacity to jump the species barrier and cause severe disease, with high mortality in humans. Evidence shows that H5N1 may be able to survive on surfaces for up to 72 hours, and on tissues and clothing for up to 24 hours.

 

 Contact ViRUSafe                                        Back to top 

How will HN51 be able to spread between humans?

Influenza viruses have a relatively high mutation rate through a series of small consecutive, but random mutations. They may also evolve in larger more abrupt steps through a process known as genetic re assortment, e.g. material exchanged between a human Influenza virus and an Avian Influenza virus.

This abrupt mutation of genetic material may also occur through a third party species such as the pig, in which there is evidence that simultaneous infection with human and Avian Influenza does occur. Once the mutation has occurred, and there are proven cases of human to human transmission, this would be the start of a global flu pandemic.

Pandemic flu could take as little as 2 to 4 weeks to spread from Asia to the UK, with the peak of the UK epidemic following about 50 days later.

The pandemic may come in more than one wave of infection that could be several months apart. Assessments suggests that illness-related absence from work of 25% of employees over the course of the pandemic (only half of what may be expected in a widespread pandemic). Domestic product may fall by between £3 billion and £7 billion. It is also possible that workers not affected by influenza directly, may choose not to work for fear of contamination or because of the need to care for unwell relatives.

PREPARATION NOT PANIC is the key.

Following policies and procedures will help life to go on as normal as possible whilst helping to protect your family and business when an outbreak does occur.

 The time to act is NOW

Contact ViRUSafe today and make sure you and your business are prepared for a pandemic outbreak in the UK through training/education of all aspects of infection control and personal hygiene, equipment and products to reduce the risks of transmission and cross infection, and outbreak planning.  

Contact ViRUSafe                                        Back to top 

Useful sites for more information on Pandemic Flu and H5N1

 


World Health Organization

 
Department of Health


Health Protection Agency 

 
NHS Direct

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