Why do hospitals need a Plan for Pandemic Influenza?Historic evidence suggests that pandemics occur three to four times per century. In the last century there have been three influenza pandemics:
- Spanish Flu in 1918-1919
- Asian Flu in 1957-1958
- Hong Kong Flu in 1968-1969
The most deadly, the Spanish Flu killed an estimated 30,000-50,000 people in Canada and 20-40 million people worldwide.
- The next pandemic virus could be present in Canada within three months after it has emerged in another part of the world.
- Pandemic Influenza usually occurs in 2-3 waves lasting up to 12-18 months
- Appropriate pandemic planning can reduce the number of people infected, the amount of illness and deaths, and minimize disruption to health care services
In Hamilton, a pandemic of moderate severity will result in approximately:
- 360,000 persons infected
- 72,000-182,000 clinically ill
- 33,000-82,000 requiring out patient care
- 500-1500 requiring hospital admission
The above statistics will overwhelm medical beds and ventilated bed capacity.
Reference: Ontario Health Plan for Influenza Pandemic, June 2005
When does Pandemic Influenza Occur?
- Pandemic Influenza will occur when all four of the following conditions are in place:
- A new influenza virus is detected
- Human-to-human transmission happens easily
- The new virus causes serious clinical illness and death
- The population has little or no immunity to the virus
What should the hospital pandemic influenza plan be based on?
- The pandemic planning phases developed by the World Health Organization
- A collaborative approach by all key stakeholders within St. Joseph's Healthcare and Hamilton Health Sciences
- The plan will be reflective of the Ontario Health Pandemic Influenza Plan and the City of Hamilton Community Pandemic Influenza Plan
What is the current status of Pandemic Planning for St. Joseph's Healthcare and Hamilton Health Sciences?
- The Joint-Project Managers for "Clinical Health Services-Pandemic Planning" officially launched the planning for both SJH & HHS the week of January 16th
- Stephanie Trowbridge, Joint-Project Manager SJH
(905) 522-1155 ext 35014
- Kathy Clark, Joint-Project Manager HHS
(905) 522-2100 ext. 42491
For more information
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