Compliance with community mitigation and interventions in Pandemic Influenza : a community policing strategy
Alben, Timothy P.
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A number of response plans and strategies have been published concerning preparation for an oncoming Pandemic Influenza. The majority of federal guidance and state planning with respect to pandemic preparation focuses excessively on the availability and distribution of effective vaccine and antiviral remedies; pharmaceutical solutions. Effective vaccines, presently unavailable, will not be in production and available for application for at least eight months after the onset of an identified pandemic. Community mitigations and interventions such as school closures, event cancellations, limited travel, quarantine and work at home plans are traditional responses to slowing the spread of a virus. In order to effectively implement these time tested strategies, voluntary community compliance with interventions becomes exceedingly important. The recent global experience with SARS and current mathematical modeling of virus spread characteristics support community mitigation efforts. The community policing model, having evolved over the last twenty years, provides a pre-existing framework to engage the public in grass roots pandemic education, awareness, planning and problem solving partnerships. The Incident Command System provides a structure for collaborative, multi-agency approach to successfully implementing a community awareness and compliance initiative. Community mitigations will save lives.
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