Monday, April 27, 2009

Pandemic? What's that?

My friend came over last night to share with me some preparedness tips in the event that we have a real flu pandemic. Now because I'm an idiot... I had to look up what a pandemic IS. Please tell me there's at least one other person out there that didn't know what it was.

An influenza pandemic is a global outbreak of disease that occurs when a new flu virus, to which people have little or no immunity, appears in the human population. It causes serious illness that spreads easily from person to person worldwide.

Pandemics are different from seasonal outbreaks of the flu. Seasonal outbreaks are cause by subtypes of influenza viruses that are already in existence among people, whereas pandemic outbreaks are cuase by new subtypes that have never circulated among people or that have not circulated among people in a long time.

(If you can't read the funny part to me was the last 2 lines says "spitting spreads Spanish Influenza DON'T SPIT")

I had heard about the Spanish Influenza (thanks Twilight), but didn't know the severity of it. There have been 3 recent pandemics 1918-1919, 1957-1958 and 1968-1969. Here are some stats of the deaths and although we're getting better at preventing them, we are not out of harms way.

Things we should have on hand (preferably BEFORE the shelves are empty at the store):

Food and water for at least 1 month (1-2 gallons per person per day)
1 month supply of Tylenol, Advil and cough medicine per person
1 month supply Gatorade (or Pedialyte) per person
Toilet paper and tissues
Large garbage bags to store contaminated trash
Latex gloves
Surgical face masks
Bleach and Lysol and LOTS of it!

This is a very small list of things needed. There is obviously SO much more needed and for each family it would be totally different. If such a flu pandemic occurred it would overwhelm medical centers and cause delays in both emergency and routine medical care. There would be a shortage of beds, ventilators, drugs, masks, gloves and other supplies for survival. Unlike a hurricane or bombing, the crisis would drag on from 12-18 MONTHS!!! (what was that the prophets have been saying about a year's supply of food and water...hmmm)

So consider yourself re-warned and go get some drugs and Gatorade to be at least a little bit prepared.


rebecca @ older and wisor said...

Did you notice that with the last two deaths in the US it reduced by half? So it'll split in half again and just take out all of North Dakota. Since there isn't any hospitals there, just cows.

I seriously have to laugh about all of this: symptoms? Oh yeah, it's just like the regular flu. Then you get better.

I'm pretty sure when I was last sick I probablt had it. Alas,I was never tested, so I guess I'll never know...although I AM starting to grow a small curly tail...

Pamela said...

Can I just throw in that they are not just surgical masks but N95 masks. You can find them at Home Depot. :)

Brittany said...

Thanks, I will be at Target tomorrow stocking up. Right after I sanitize my cart!

Brittany said...

Thanks, I will be at Target tomorrow stocking up. Right after I sanitize my cart!

The Pollock Family said...

We aren't leaving the house anymore. :)

Unknown said...

This is amazing to me however, I really don't think this is a pandemic...I hope I am right! However, thanks for the reminders about food storage and all the other necessities that need to be considered!