Pandemic Flu & General Disaster Preparedness Developing a Continuity of Operations Plan Amanda Guizar Arkansas Department of Health Preparedness Branch
Please enjoy the show… • https://www.fema.gov/media-library/assets/videos/94388
Continuity Phases Four Phases - • Readiness and Preparedness • Activation and Relocation • Continuity Operations • Reconstitution
Orders of Sucession • Ensure orders of succession are three deep and account for the expected rate of absenteeism • Geographical dispersion is encouraged.
Delegations of Authority During the climax of a pan flu event, absenteeism could be significant. Identify roles of authority needing delegation. Establish a three deep chain to cover the operations over a long period of time.
Core Essential Functions • How will your organization sustain during an event of this nature? • What are your essential functions? • What functions can be suspended until normalcy returns? • If you have mutual aid agreements, how will they be affected or impacted? • What is your plan B if you are unable to get your routine deliveries and supplies?
Communications Needs • Develop/Review Communications Plan. • Consider the need for additional equipment to perform essential functions. • Extra tech support. • Exercise your comms plan!! • Make it routine.
Special Considerations With a general disaster event… • Interruption of routine services • Utilization of alternate facility • Securing damaged facility • Patient movement
Personnel Policies and Procedures • Identify what your current procedures are and how they can be used and/or modified during a General Disaster Event. • Employee notification • Transport of patients • Notification to loved ones • Access to patients records and orders
What is Pandemic Influenza? An influenza pandemic is a global outbreak of a new influenza A virus that is very different from current and recently circulating human seasonal influenza A viruses. Pandemics happen when new (novel) influenza A viruses emerge which are able to infect people easily and spread from person to person in an efficient and sustained way.
How can COOP differ from a general disaster to a flu pandemic? General Disaster • Limited geographically • Limited in duration • Destruction is visible • Economic impacts are local Pandemic Influenza • Widespread • Occurs in waves • Extended or severely reduced workforce • No visible property damage
Special Considerations With a pandemic Influenza event… • Absenteeism • Interruption of routine services • Long Term recovery • Capabilities overwhelmed • Protection of your most valuable asset
Personnel Policies and Procedures • Identify what your current procedures are and how they can be used and/or modified during a Pan Flu Event. • Leave to support ill family members Assistance for those without leave • Returning to work • Travel to infected areas • Sending ill employees home • PPE
Keeping your Workplace Protected from Pan Flu • Social distancing • Close non critical common areas • Personnel notification • Information and Education • Best hygienic practices • Worksite cleaning procedures • PPE and infection control measures
Devolution • Consider a full or partial devolution if your organization becomes engulfed or overwhelmed by the event and unable to perform essential functions. • Have guidance detailed for those in authority. • Devolve or shift operations to another area or virtual if possible.
Train and Exercise Your plan is only as effective as your ability to test it. • Test your systems outside of the network. • If telework is an option, have employees routinely utilize this method. • Update your call tree or designated point of contacts. • How long can you operate on this plan? • Once you’ve trained and exercised, learn from your gaps and shortfalls.
Planning Tools • FEMA has guidance documents and Continuity Templates available: https://www.fema.gov/media-library-data/1396880633531-35405f61d483668155492a7cccd1600b/Pandemic_Influenza_Template.pdf • Flu.gov also provides an abundance of information with regard to planning and continuity operations: www.flu.gov • Arkansas Department of Health provides many topics on Influenza within our state including statistics: http://www.healthy.arkansas.gov/programs-services/topics/influenza • CDC provides additional resources on pandemic influenza planning: https://www.cdc.gov/flu/pandemic-resources/planning-preparedness/national-strategy-planning.html
Questions? Thank you for your time and attention. Amanda.Guizar@Arkansas.gov 479-747-8650