Friday, September 29, 2006

APHA Fact Sheet Provides Advice on Pandemic Flu

Are you concerned about pandemic flu? Wondering what to do or how to prepare? A new fact sheet from the American Public Health Association can help.

The fact sheet addresses ways you can prepare for and protect yourself against pandemic flu. It also covers signs and symptoms of pandemic flu and reviews key facts.

The next time you are meeting with friends or heading to your church, YMCA, community center or kid's school, bring copies of the fact sheet along. By sharing information and educating others, we can all be more ready.

3 comments:

Walker said...

There are 2 things I particularly liked about this fact sheet. First, it told people the difference between pandemic flu and the "normal flu". I think part of the problem is in the stigmatization of the flu as something that is "not a major problem". Second, the sheet stresses the importance of washing your hands. I don't get why some people just can't understand the importance of this.

I do have a question, however. Is there a list somewhere of places where one can get a flu vaccine? Or where I can find out how much it costs?

APHA Flu Team said...

Hi Walker. Thanks for your comment. To find the location of a clinic in your area, contact your local health department, doctor or drug store, or use the American Lung Association’s Flu Clinic Locator at http://flucliniclocator.org/.

fredness said...

I am very happy to see your organization has been proactive on this issue. I believe you could be more forthcoming with the facts. You leave out a number of things such as the fact that there will not be sufficient anti-viral medicine and no vaccine widely available for over 6 months. The WHO explains this in "Ten Things You Need To Know About Pandemic Influenza" http://www.who.int/csr/disease/influenza/pandemic10things/en/index.html

I think people may get a better perspective if you explain 30% of poeple catch the flu every year but only 0.2% die from it. During a pandemic a much larger percentage of people will die. Half of those recieving antivirals to treat H5N1 influenza have died and there will not be enough antivirals for everyone.

None of the models support the recommendation of encouraging households to stockpile only 2 weeks of food and water. It appears 4 weeks should be a minimum based on 1918 and MIDAS.

A person can be transmitting flu 1 to 8 days before they feel any symptoms. Most people start feeling sick in about 2 days. You pass on the virus for up to a week after you stop feeling symptoms. Children under 12 are contagious up to 21 days after symptoms stop.

The Bird Flu and You series of posters from the Center for Technology and National Security Policy are excellent. http://www.ndu.edu/CTNSP/Bird_flu.htm

I suggest you also add a the address of the www.pandemicflu.gov website. Or the www.fluwikie.com which is a great venue for thinking about implementable solutions to foreseeable problems. There are hundreds of pages of useful information.

Keep up the good work.