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Feds outline state pandemic planning gains and gaps

first_imgJan 16, 2009 (CIDRAP News) – The US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) yesterday released an assessment of progress states have made toward planning for an influenza pandemic. The report found that many scored well in areas such as protecting citizens and administering mass vaccinations, but showed major gaps in such areas as sustaining state operations, developing community mitigation plans, and maintaining key infrastructure.States were required to submit their pandemic plans to the federal government 3 months after HHS issued a pandemic planning guide for states last March. Both the state pandemic planning guidance and the assessment requirement were spelled out in the in the Bush administration’s national pandemic influenza strategy plan, released by the White House’s Homeland Security Council in May 2006.The 31-page document, “Assessment of States’ Operating Plans to Combat Pandemic Influenza,” is available on the HHS Web site (see link below).William Raub, PhD, science advisor to HHS Secretary Mike Leavitt, said in an HHS press release yesterday that states and territories have accomplished a great amount over a short time, but much more work is needed. “The results of this assessment provide a broad-brush picture of strengths and weaknesses across various aspects of pandemic preparedness,” he said.HHS’s overall assessment seems to mirror the findings of an Oct 16 report from the National Governors Association, which also found progress but expressed concerns about several planning gaps.Yesterday’s report, the second part of a two-stage assessment, was the first time that federal officials have made their state-specific findings public. The first stage, which spanned Aug 2006 to Jan 2007, was shared only with states.The review of 56 states and territories was conducted by 12 federal departments and two White House offices and covers 28 operating objectives that fall under three strategic goals: ensuring continuity of state government and agency operation, protecting citizens, and maintaining critical infrastructure and key assets.Continuity of state agencies and governmentEvaluators found that 54 states and territories were inadequately prepared to sustain state agencies and support and protect workers and that the other 2 had many major gaps. They wrote that states that had a statewide plan or one agency that directed the planning had a better understanding of what was needed to keep state government and its workforce operating during a pandemic.They emphasized that traditional continuation-of-operations plans do not contain all of the elements needed to support government operations during a pandemic.The states fared better on sustaining public health operations during a pandemic: 33 of 56 states or territories had no or few major gaps. Those that scored low in this area focused mainly on external health services and prophylaxis and didn’t adequately address internal public health operational continuity and protection of its workforce. Low-scoring states also lacked personnel training and exercises.In reviewing states’ plans to sustain transportation systems, federal officials found that states have made substantial advances in communicating with neighboring jurisdictions and other state and federal agencies, as well as being ready to issue public service announcements and public safety campaigns.They found, however, that many states haven’t formulated cleaning and sanitizing methods for transportation systems, cargo, and facilities. Some had no actionable plans for keeping goods and people moving. In all, 12 states and territories had no transportation-preparedness gaps, 11 had few major gaps, 8 had many major gaps, and 25 had inadequately prepared.Protecting citizensForty-nine states and territories had no or few gaps in ensuring surveillance and laboratory capacity during each stage of a pandemic, but evaluators reported that many seem to struggle with some specific tasks such as planning for electronic death reporting and surge laboratory capacity.Port-of-entry concerns apply to only 16 states and territories: those with a US Quarantine Station. Only one of those 16—Washington state—was found to have no major gaps in this area.Federal officials said many of the port-of-entry states and territories are still in the draft stage of pandemic planning and getting guidance from and working out reimbursement issues with federal personnel, such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). However, the evaluators pointed out that many states seem to be having a difficult time arranging separate quarantine facilities for detaining potentially exposed passengers.Regarding community mitigation measures, states vary widely in their ability to implement plans, the authors found. Though most have identified legal authorities needed to implement interventions such as closing schools or canceling large gatherings. Most states have not engaged with businesses, school districts, tribal agencies and other partners to discuss community mitigation planning.States seem to be lagging behind in community mitigation planning when compared with other aspects of pandemic planning, the group said. “The federal government should support their efforts in this area, as it may be the single most important aspect of readiness in terms of reducing morbidity and mortality during a pandemic,” they wrote.In general, states received high marks for planning for antiviral drug distribution and ensuring mass vaccination capacity. However, some states are struggling with other tasks surrounding vaccination, including collaborating with state and local health departments, transitioning from planning to implementation, and having a stand-alone pandemic influenza vaccination plan.States seem to have misunderstood the objective that directs them to mitigate the influenza pandemic impact on workers in the state to mean just state workers, the report said. Only three had no or few major gaps. Better communication between state pandemic planners and their agencies might have avoided this problem, they said.Sustaining critical infrastructure and resourcesStates still face steep challenges in supporting and sustaining key infrastructure during a pandemic, though the authors said they are encouraged by progress many have made. The review process unveiled some notable efforts and best practices, including a dedicated critical infrastructure pandemic plan, a public-private partnership plan for preserving critical infrastructure, and inclusion of critical infrastructure concerns in health department pandemic plans.HHS said in its press release that the critical infrastructure panning merits significant attention. “Even the best plans can fail if managers cannot accommodate the significant absenteeism and disruptions in supporting services and supplies that an influenza pandemic is almost certain to produce,” the agency said.See also:Jan 15 HHS press releaseHHS state assessment reportMar 14, 2008, CIDRAP News story “HHS issues pandemic planning guide for states”Oct 16, 2008, CIDRAP News story “Governors group identified states’ pandemic-preparedness gaps”last_img read more

Hawke’s Bay mum told she’s dying after pausing cancer treatment to give birth

first_imgStuff co.nz 2 March 2017Family First Comment: A very sad – but at the same time, inspiring – story of love and sacrifice. And the value of the unborn child.For as long as he lives, Rhianna Truman’s son will know his mum laid down her life for him.Truman, 17, was diagnosed in 2012 with adamantinoma, an extremely rare bone cancer which was found in her leg.When the Hawke’s Bay teenager fell pregnant last year, she was offered a type of treatment which may have helped slow down the disease – but it would have put her unborn son at risk.She declined the treatment, in the hopes her child would be healthy.“When I found out I had cancer I was scared.“But when I found out I was pregnant, I was like, ‘this is my reason, this is my chance to make something good out of my life, and be a proud mother, and for him to eventually be proud of me’.”She was dealt the crushing blow last week that her days with him were numbered. Her son is four months old.“There’s no cure for me.READ MORE: http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/hawkes-bay/89985947/hawkes-bay-mum-told-shes-dying-after-pausing-cancer-treatment-to-give-birthlast_img read more

911 Text Messaging Implemented In Dearborn County

first_imgDearborn County residents can now send a text to 911 operators in case of an emergency.The county becomes the latest in the region to expand services those who need to send a message when calling isn’t an option. Texting is specifically useful for someone that is deaf, experiencing a stroke, or in case of a home invasion or abduction.Text sent to 911 have the same 160-character limit as other texts. In the case of an emergency operators ask to be provided an exact location and nature of the emergency.Currently, the option is available for Verizon Wireless customers. AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile have also pledged to provide the service.Franklin County implemented the text-to-911 service earlier this year.Local police agencies still say the most efficient way to contact an emergency responder is through a phone call.last_img read more

Eight Area Wrestlers State Finals Bound

first_imgCongratulations to our eight area Wrestlers who will be advancing to The State Finals.132 #.  Cainan Schaefer-South Dearborn.152 #.  Andrew Negangard-East Central.170 #.  Jake Ruberg-Lawrenceburg.182 #.  Jonah Rolfes-Lawrenceburg.220 #.  Mason Parris-Lawrenceburg.285 #.  Tyler Selm-Franklin County, Clark Minges-East Central, and Dylan Cain-Greensburg.2017 Wrestling Semi-States @ New Castle2017 Wrestling Semi-States @ Evansville ReitzThe Wrestling State Finals will be taking place Friday-Saturday, February 17-18, at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.last_img read more

Hill-Rom gets multi-year defense contract

first_imgBatesville, In. — The U.S. Department of Defense has awarded a $45 million contract to Batesville-based Hill-Rom.The five-year, fixed-price contract will provide hospital equipment to a Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support base in Philadelphia through September of 2022.Hill-Rom competed with 27 other companies to get the contract.last_img

Ruth E. Whittington – Brookville

first_imgFriends may visit with the family on Monday, August 20, 2018 from 10 a.m. until 12 p.m. at Cook Rosenberger Funeral Home, 107 Vine Street, Sunman.  A Mass of Christian burial, officiated by grandson, Rev. Shaun Whittington, will follow at St. Nicholas Church at 12:30.  Burial will be Tuesday at Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Cincinnati at 10 a.m. Those surviving who will cherish Ruth’s memory include her daughter, Sharon (Jack) Keuper of Ramsey, MN, and one son, Neil (Patricia) Whittington of Brookville; 7 grandchildren, Kathy (Mike) Papp, Kimberly (Giancarlo) Amente, Rev. Shaun Whittington, James (Kara) Whittington, Grant Whittington, Joel (Jenna) Whittington, and Benjamin Whittington, and 9 great-grandchildren.  Besides her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by one brother, George Schuster. Memorial donations can be directed to Blooming Grove VFD.  To sign the online guestbook please visit www.cookrosenberger.com.  The staff of Cook Rosenberger Funeral Home is honored to care of the family of Ruth Whittington.center_img Ruth E. Whittington, of Brookville, was born on June 12, 1921 in Cincinnati, a daughter to George and Frances Schuster.  She married Theodore Whittington in 1946 and together they had two children.  Ruth was a lifelong practicing Catholic and loved flower gardening and playing cards.  Later in life she enjoyed building doll houses until her worsening eyesight prevented it.  On Thursday, August 16, 2018 at the age of 97, she passed away at Good Samaritan Hospital in Cincinnati.last_img read more

Hull fans to get say on name change

first_img Manager Steve Bruce has become increasingly frustrated with the situation as the season has progressed, with the row often overshadowing a highly impressive return to the top flight. Although the FA said no timeframe had yet been set for a decision, Bruce appeared to believe no verdict would be forthcoming before April and pleaded for all concerned to get behind the team until that time. “(The application) has been done. It’s been lodged and I can ask of the supporters is to get behind the team,” he said. ”We’re not going to hear the decision until April. As far as I’m concerned let’s all get on with it and see what the FA come up with. ”Anything else just gets in the road of my important job which is to beat Stoke on Saturday. ”I hope now for the next five months it goes away. The job is hard enough as a newly promoted team. ”The last thing we want as a team is to have distractions and to get embroiled in things us as a team can’t do anything about. ”I think the fans are delighted with everything that’s going on at the club – in terms of on the pitch – and it’s important it stays that way.” Whether or not Bruce will be granted his wish remains to be seen, but umbrella group Supporters Direct believe the club’s fans are justified in making their dissent public. “As an organisation, Supporters Direct believes that football clubs are something different, something special,” a spokesman said. “The relationship between fans and their clubs transcends normal loyalties. So, like most of you, we’ve been angry at what is happening at Hull City AFC. “The very identity of football clubs, and their fans and communities, are simply too important to be entrusted to temporary owners, who are generally more interested in what they can take out of a club rather than what they can put back in, and whose decision-making does not take account of the wider interests of those who count their loyalty in tens of years and generations.” In the face of strong opposition, Hull have formally applied to the FA to adopt Hull Tigers as the team’s playing name, and opponents to the change may be boosted by confirmation that the governing body intends to include fans in its deliberation process. A statement released on Thursday evening read: “The FA can confirm that it has received a request from Hull City to change its playing name to Hull Tigers from season 2014/15. “Requests to change a playing name of a club are considered under FA Rule A3 (l) and require the prior written permission of the FA Council. “As part of the evaluation of the request a consultation process will be undertaken with various stakeholders including supporter groups. “At present the FA is not able to provide a timescale for the completion of the consultation process and does not expect to make any further comment until the assessment of the request has been completed.” It seems certain that supporter group will make their opposition to the change plain, with the City Till We Die organisation having earlier issued its own statement calling on the FA to reject Allam’s application. It read: ”We remain confident that, with the eyes of the whole footballing world upon them, the FA will make the right decision, and act to protect not only the heritage and traditions of Hull City AFC, but also those of other clubs whose identities may come under threat in the future. ”This issue matters for all football supporters, not just the people of Hull, and the decision the FA makes will set a very important precedent.” The Football Association is set to consult fans before deciding whether to accept a proposal to rename Hull City as ‘Hull Tigers’ from the start of next season. Hull owner Assem Allam has met with fierce opposition from supporters ever since he first mooted the idea of ditching the 109-year-old moniker of Hull City AFC in the summer. But the Egyptian businessman, who has invested around £70million in the club since he bought it on the brink of administration in 2010, insists the rebranding process will increase commercial interest overseas and help draw new sponsorship. Press Associationlast_img read more

Clarke: I’d love to be captain

first_img Press Association The 46-year-old was in contention to be named captain for this year’s contest at Gleneagles before ruling himself out of the running, with Paul McGinley appointed in January 2013. The 2016 Ryder Cup will be held at Hazeltine in Minnesota and Clarke can imagine himself leading the European team out in front of a receptive American crowd. Quoted in the Daily Express, he said: “I would love to be Ryder Cup captain. I’ve played in five and been involved two others and it would be a huge honour if I was to be asked at some stage. “If they were to offer me the job I would certainly not be picky as to when it would be. “I’ve always been fortunate throughout my career in that I seem to have been quite popular with the American fans. They have always been very, very good to me over there. “Wherever, I just hope at some stage that they do ask me to have the ultimate honour and be Ryder Cup captain.” The Northern Irishman was overlooked for a vice-captain’s position in Scotland but will be at the PGA Centenary Course as a television pundit. Clarke’s countryman Rory McIlroy believes the former Open champion would be suited to taking the job across the Atlantic. “There would be no better candidate from the European side,” McIlroy told the BBC. “He is absolutely loved over there. He would be just as well received in the United States as probably the United States captain. “So, it can only be an advantage for the European team if Darren was to lead us out.” McIlroy, who also voiced strong support for McGinley’s candidacy late in the selection process, was interviewed with Clarke and Graeme McDowell for a programme entitled ‘Major Champions’, to be aired on BBC1 Northern Ireland on Wednesday and BBC2 on Thursday. center_img Darren Clarke admits he would love to be Europe’s Ryder Cup captain.last_img read more

Other Sports Pulwama Terror Attack: Indian leg of Asian Snooker tour postponed, Pakistan players face visa issues

first_img For all the Latest Sports News News, Other Sports News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps. The KSBA is exploring another international event as they have already approved the budget for the Asian Tour from the state government,” Subramaniam said.         Sporting activities in the country involving Pakistani players were badly affected in the aftermath the terror attack that killed more than 40 CRPF personnel on February 14.        Earlier this week, a three-member Pakistani shooting contingent was denied visas to compete in the ongoing ISSF Rifle and Pistol World Cup here, a development that irked the International Olympic Committee (IOC).             A miffed IOC shot off a strongly-worded letter to India, asking for written assurances from the government for smooth entry into the country of all athletes of the participating nations, or else risk losing out on hosting international events. highlights India leg of the Asian Snooker Tour has been postponed indefinitely over Pakistan players’ visa issues.India was supposed to be the last leg of the tour after first two legs were held in Qatar and China.Three-member Pakistani shooting contingent was denied visas to compete in ISSF World Cup. Bangalore: The India leg of the Asian Snooker Tour has been postponed indefinitely over Pakistan players’ visa issues in the aftermath of the ghastly Pulwama terror attack.  The 10 Reds Asian Tour Snooker tournament was scheduled to be held in Bengaluru in the last week of March but has been postponed after the organisers failed to guarantee visas for Pakistani cueists. The Asian Confederation of Billiards Sport (ACBS) decided to postpone the event after India failed to provide guarantee for issuing visas to the Pakistani players. “Looking at what was happening with other sporting events in India, we informed the ACBS that visa will be an issue for Pakistani players. So, the ACBS decided to postpone the last leg of the Asian Snooker Tour indefinitely,” Billiards and Snooker Federation of India (BSFI) secretary S Subramaniam told PTI.              “Six out of 24 players are from Pakistan or are Pakistani-origin. The haven’t applied for visa but we made ACBS aware of the current situation.” The first two legs of the Asian Snooker Tour were held in Qatar and China. India was supposed to be the last leg of the tour. The BSFI official, however, said the local organisers of the event, Karnataka State Billiards Association (KSBA), is planning to host another international event without Pakistani players around the same time.last_img read more

FRENCH OPEN 2018:  Djokovic Beats Verdasco to Reach Q’finals

first_imgNovak Djokovic strengthened his claims as a French Open contender by reaching the quarter-finals with a straight-set victory over Spain’s Fernando Verdasco.Djokovic, seeded 20th, won 6-3 6-4 6-2 against 30th seed Verdasco.The 31-year-old Serb has reached the last eight at Roland Garros for a 12th time – an Open era record. The 12-time Grand Slam champion will play Marco Cecchinato in the last eight after the Italian upset Belgian eighth seed David Goffin.Djokovic, who won his only Roland Garros title in 2016 to complete a career Grand Slam, was not considered among the pre-tournament favourites following an injury-hit year.The former world number one has dropped down the rankings to 22nd after taking time off with an elbow injury following last year’s Wimbledon. He also needed a minor operation after making a comeback at the Australian Open in January.However, he is quietly going about his business in Paris and has dropped only one set on his way to the last eight.Djokovic may still not playing at the same level as he was at the peak of his powers, but his movement and defensive ability – two of his great hallmarks – look good enough to trouble most opponents.Greater tests than Verdasco, who had beaten Djokovic in three of their previous four meetings on clay but not since 2010, will lie ahead.If Djokovic beats Cecchinato he will meet either German second seed Alexander Zverev or Austrian seventh seed Dominic Thiem – who have won more Tour matches in 2018 than any other player – in the last four.He would not face 10-time champion Rafael Nadal – a rematch of the 2012 and 2014 finals – until the final.Djokovic made a slow start in a one-hour opening set, which took longer than the entire match between American Sloane Stephens and Estonia’s Anett Kontaveit that had preceded it on Court Philippe Chatrier.Errors from both players made it an entertaining, if not high quality, opener as they battled it out from the baseline.Djokovic broke for 3-1, seeing out the decisive moments in a set where he won only three more points than his opponent.The Serb broke serve at the first opportunity in the second set, Verdasco wiping out that deficit for 3-3, only to gift it straight back in a poor service game.Verdasco, who beat fourth seed Grigor Dimitrov in straight sets in the previous round, needed treatment for blisters as Djokovic was made to wait before serving out for two-love lead.From that point there was no way back for the Spaniard, who was aiming to reach his first Roland Garros quarter-final at the 15th attempt.The third set was straightforward for Djokovic, who broke at the first opportunity and again in the fifth, before serving out to win in two hoursand 25 minutes.He punched the air in delight before celebrating by wearing a white beret flung on to the court and doing his now-customary arm throw to all four sides of Chatrier.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more