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Friday, September 26, 2014

CDC unveils 6-phase pandemic response blueprint

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) today released a new influenza pandemic response plan that features six phases of activity, with the aim of providing clearer guidance on the timing of key actions, such as school closings and vaccinations.
The "Updated Preparedness and Response Framework for Influenza Pandemics" represents a revision of a framework issued in 2008, which itself was a modification of a 2006 plan. The latest iteration reflects lessons from the 2009 H1N1 pandemic and recent responses to outbreaks of novel flu viruses, such as the swine-origin variant H3N2 (H3N2v).
The six phases outlined in the revised plan are:
  • Investigation of cases of novel flu in humans or animals
  • Recognition of increased potential for ongoing transmission
  • Initiation of a pandemic wave, meaning efficient and sustained transmission
  • Acceleration of a pandemic wave, meaning a consistently increasing number of cases in the United States
  • Deceleration of a pandemic wave, defined as consistently declining cases in the United States
  • Preparation for future pandemic waves, meaning low pandemic flu activity
The framework has been aligned with the pandemic phases of the World Health Organization (WHO) as restructured last year, the document says. It says the WHO phases provide a general view by aggregating epidemic curves from around the world, and the CDC intervals "serve as additional points of reference to provide a...
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