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Utah's Governor Receives Recommendations From Pandemic Flu Task Force

Armen Hareyan's picture

Influenza Preparedness

The Governor's Task Force for Pandemic Influenza Preparedness has given formal recommendations to the Governor on ways to help minimize the impact anticipated in the event of a serious influenza pandemic.

The recommendations are the culmination of meetings and discussions involving a wide range of community leaders, including those with expertise in health care, business, public safety, public health, and the judicial system, as well as city, county and state elected officials, representatives of faith-based organizations, Indian Tribes, and ethnic minority communities.

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Task force members reviewed historical information from previous pandemics, the best available scientific evidence, expert opinion, and projections on how a pandemic would impact Utah. The goal in issuing the recommendations is to protect the entire community from a potentially life threatening event.

Dr. Robert Rolfs, State Epidemiologist with the Utah Department of Health says, "The effects of a pandemic influenza will seriously impact life and business as usual in the state of Utah. To reduce that impact, Utah residents need to be involved in preparation and we need to arm them with information to help prevent the spread of the virus and minimize its effects."

One of the recommendations involves creating a Governor's Pandemic Advisory Committee to help the state establish guidelines regarding medical care, assist with difficult decisions such as whether to close schools or cancel public gatherings, and navigate legislative issues. Another asks the Department of Homeland Security to assess progress in planning by communities and businesses and help determine what action the state can take to support business and community planning.