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|Knox County Board of Health Receives Flu Response Plan
|Knox County Board of Health members during their monthly meeting on December 11th received the Knox County (Illinois) Pandemic Influenza Community Response Plan.
The Response Plan assists local officials, emergency response agencies, and the Knox County Health Department in protecting the safety and well-being of Knox County citizens during a pandemic influenza.
Influenza pandemics are inevitable; however unpredictable. Occurring simultaneously across much of the U.S. and resulting in widespread illness in communities, a pandemic influenza event will result in shortages of personnel and supplies, and overload the healthcare system. In order to prepare for such instances, pandemic influenza planning includes direction for the allocation of responsibilities before, during, and after the disease outbreak, and provides reference information for supplementary public health resources.
The State of Illinois assigns responsibility for developing and maintaining pandemic influenza response plans to local public health departments, requiring that they seek input from key stakeholders in their communities involved in pandemic influenza response. During Board discussion, Greg Chance, Public Health Administrator for the Health Department emphasized that, "This Response Plan is truly a Knox County community response plan." "The input received from our partners...EMA, hospitals, and law enforcemet...has been valuable throughout planning," reports Chance, "The Department could not have completed the Response Plan without their aid, and Knox County could not enact an effective response without them."
The effect of pandemic influenza will be devastating and prolonged (weeks to months). Highly transmissible, the viral illness represents a serious threat to public health and safety. Health Department officials estimate that that a pandemic flu outbreak would result in 8,500 to 19,500 cases of illness in Knox County.
For more information about the Knox County Pandemic Influenza Community Response Plan, please contact the Knox County Health Department at (309) 344-2224, or visit www.knoxcountyhealth.org.
|12 29 08 by Newsroom
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