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Report highlights inadequate pandemic planning as a threat to EU security
Date:10/10/2007

k travellers from others, and just four aim to provide masks to either passengers or crew1.

A year on from the previous review, many nations remain ill prepared for the on-the-ground realities of an imminent flu pandemic commented Dr Richard Coker. Critically, the who, what, when and where is not defined for antiviral medications which are the first line of defence before vaccine supplies can be manufactured and distributed.

The report notes the recent increase in stockpiles of antivirals by many countries. However, the issue of how to deliver antivirals to individual patients is not addressed with the majority of plans: basic medical supplies that would be required (syringes, antibiotics and protective clothing) have not necessarily been taken into account, and would inevitably be affected by disruptions to transportation.

In the event of pandemic, initial demand for antivirals may outstrip the medical communitys ability to administer them. Although many countries in Europe have stockpiles, rigorously thought through plans for storage, distribution and administration are now an urgent requirement, as panic and ultimately chaos will result unless the operational procedures are defined and tested in advance of a pandemic, commented Dr Coker. He added: The absence of international cooperation on border control is alarming, and raises the ugly spectre of people detained without warning, and possibly against their will, when they are travelling from one country to another.


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Contact: Ruth Ashton
ruth.ashton@ketchum.com
020-761-13595
Ketchum
Source:Eurekalert

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