Tuesday, April 28, 2009
How prepared is the UK for a pandemic?
How prepared is the UK for a pandemic? I know the official view is that the UK is one of the best prepared countries to deal with swine flu. (link via BBC News) I would like to believe we are well prepared but I have to wonder after reading this article: UK GP Investigates Suspected Swine Flu Case Without Adequate Support Or Access To Antivirals (link via medicalnewstoday.com) The experience by this one GP is very worrying indeed but it also begs the question - how many other GPs are not prepared for a flu pandemic? I realize a pandemic hasn't materialized yet (and hopefully it won't) but shouldn't a strategy be in place before a pandemic strikes? Am I worrying unnecessarily? I don't think so. In fact, I just read this alarming news: More than 30 million face masks are being ordered by the Department of Health as fears grow that swine flu could become a pandemic. (link via telegraph.co.uk) The masks are needed by healthcare professionals. Why didn't the Department of Health have a stockpile of face masks ready before now? We are told to stay calm and not to panic but I can't help feeling anxious and worried about how the NHS will cope. What do you think? Do you still believe the UK is one of the best-prepared countries in the world for dealing with a pandemic? Related post from my blog: UK Department of Health: "CATCH IT. BIN IT. KILL IT." - new advert showing how to prevent swine flu Links via the web about Swine Flu: Human Swine Influenza: advice for the public (link via Health Protection Agency) Important Information About Swine Flu (link via NHS Choices) Swine influenza frequently asked questions (link via World Health Organization)