Blog
Contact Us

BREAKING NEWS







NEW School Preparedness Information


In a Crisis now? 770-643-1114

FIRESTORM® transforms crisis into value.  The FIRESTORM PREDICT.PLAN.PERFORM.® methodology combines C-Suite level consulting, dynamic software solutions, and proven crisis management expertise to empower clients to create resilient organizations. FIRESTORM is a nationally recognized leader in Crisis Management, Continuity Planning, Critical Decision Support, Crisis Response, Crisis Communications, Crisis Public Relations, and Consequence Management.

CLICK HERE FOR BREAKING NEWS & ANALYSES

DONALD A. DONAHUE, JR., DHEd, MBA, FACHE

Firestorm Expert Council Member Dr. Donald Donahue JR., DHEd, MBA, FACHE, Lieutenant Colonel (Ret), is as an Advisory Member to the American Academy of Disaster Medicine www.aadm.us

  • Home
    Home This is where you can find all the blog posts throughout the site.
  • Categories
    Categories Displays a list of categories from this blog.
  • Tags
    Tags Displays a list of tags that has been used in the blog.
  • Login

Flu season and Superstorm Sandy - Causal Relationship?

Posted by on in Communicable Illness
  • Font size: Larger Smaller
  • Hits: 3170
  • 0 Comments
  • Subscribe to this entry
  • Print

Causal Relationship between Flu season and Superstorm Sandy Unlikely

Don Donahue

Analysis by Donald. A. Donahue, Jr., DHEd, MBA, FACHE, Firestorm Expert Council Member

Summary: Michael Olesen, Safety Officer, MN-1 DMAT
Instructional Faculty for St. Catherine University wrote on the possible hypothesis regarding the influenza season this year [season 2012-2013], particularly what would account for the number of cases and its early start. He discusses that we can tie some of the impact of influenza this year [2012-2013] to Hurricane Sandy. He started thinking about this during a meeting with his MN1-DMAT [Minnesota-1, Disaster Medical Assistance Team]. It was triggered by a comment about an outbreak of norovirus at the medical shelter that his team was staffing.

Analysis: Absent tracking of early clusters of influenza cases in the Hurricane Sandy shelter populations, it is unlikely that a causal relationship can be established for this year’s early flu season.  The hardest hit areas of the Jersey Shore, the Rockaways, lower Manhattan, and Long Island are densely populated and have a sizable percentage of residents who regularly commute.  One might postulate, therefore, that this year’s early emergence of influenza would have taken hold irrespective of Sandy’s impact.

This does not mean, however, that there is not a profound lesson here.  Despite years of promotion and decades of safety and efficacy data, a shockingly small percentage of the population seeks flu shots.  A little more than a third of Americans are immunized against influenza.  Vaccination rates among healthcare workers are roughly twice that, but far below the CDC recommended goal of 90 percent.  Considered from a different perspective, when you meet a first responder, healthcare worker, or other public servant there is a 50/50 chance this individual is not immunized.  The flu is communicable before symptoms emerge (and in some cases symptoms never appear).  It is more likely the early and rapid spread of influenza this year is a result of lack of prevention.

This leads back to the core recommendations for avoiding seasonal flu – timely immunization, frequent hand washing, cough etiquette, self-quarantine (stay home when you are ill), and proper diet and exercise.  This is not simply a matter of passing inconvenience.  Lost productivity, cost of treatment (as much as $10.5 billion this year), and the potential for deadly consequences from flu and flu-related illness (as many as 49,000 in some years) are matters of individual, corporate, and national concern.  Why, then, would anyone opt to accept an easily preventable risk?

Rate this blog entry:

Comments

  • No comments made yet. Be the first to submit a comment

Leave your comment

Guest Saturday, 19 April 2014

Newsletter Sign Up

newsletter signup
Firestorm believes that crisis preparedness is predicated on recognition of imminent threats. Our weekly newsletter is an invaluable tool that reports on current conditions and issues, and includes original commentary and analysis from our Expert Council, Senior Leadership, and Guest Contributors. Valuable, insightful commentary analysis each week - and it's FREE! Sign up to receive these critical alerts

Download our Toolbar! Get our toolbar!

Register for an Event

Crisis CalendarFirestorm Events

Firestorm presents a variety of topical webinars each month for the business community presented by leading experts in their fields.  Our Leadership Team and Expert Council present as Keynote Speakers, Program Presenters, and Panel Members at events across the country. Keep up to date and Join us!
View our Upcoming Events...

 

Read Our Latest Analysis

NewBookCoverFirestorm founders Harry Rhulen and Jim Satterfield wrote Disaster Ready People for a Disaster Ready America specifically to address the need for crisis and disaster preparedness at home, and the book has become a cornerstone of many personal and corporate preparedness programs.

Download the eBook..

Who We Are

What We Do

How We Do It

Contact Firestorm

Newsroom

Biography

Dr. Donald Donahue JR., DHEd, MBA, FACHE, Lieutenant Colonel (Ret), is as an Advisory Member to the American Academy of Disaster Medicine www.aadm.us

Calendar

Loading ...
Our Address:
1000 Holcomb Woods Parkway Suite 130
Roswell, GA USA 30076

Information

FIRESTORM® transforms crisis into value.  The FIRESTORM PREDICT.PLAN.PERFORM.® methodology combines C-Suite level consulting, dynamic software solutions, and proven crisis management expertise to empower clients to create resilient organizations. FIRESTORM is a nationally recognized leader in Crisis Management, Continuity Planning, Critical Decision Support, Crisis Response, Crisis Communications, Crisis Public Relations, and Consequence Management.

We are the Crisis Coach® (800) 321-2219


Meet Our Management Team
Facebook
Google
Twitter