Previously adopted by many PCTs, it is now widely recognised as the effective pandemic flu planning and management tool for general practice, pharmacies, and out-of-hours services.
Everyone expected that the next pandemic would be the H5N1 avian flu virus which kills over 60% of infected people. Fortunately it was brought by the more benign H1N1 virus. However, it still exposed large gaps in healthcare systems and their plans to deal with increased staff absence due to illness and caring responsibilities at a time when demands on services were at their highest.
The development of a new strain is as likely now as it was in 2009/10 and all NHS organisations should give high priority to put in place, review, test, and update their pandemic plans.
NOTE: In the Health Bill there is a requirement for all NHS organisations to implement a new Emergency Preparedness Resilience and Response (EPRR) in relation to Influenza Pandemic Preparedness which according to the NHS CBA should have been in place by 31 March 2013.
"The rollout plan has gone very satisfactorily and the service that you have provided has been professional and flexible to our needs."