About Careers Internship MedBlogs Contact us
Medindia LOGIN REGISTER
Advertisement

Most Schools in US are Not Prepared for Next Pandemic

by VR Sreeraman on September 1, 2012 at 8:34 PM
Font : A-A+

 Most Schools in US are Not Prepared for Next Pandemic

Majority of the schools in US are not properly prepared for another pandemic, according to a study. The report says that only 40 percent of schools have updated their plan since the 2009 H1N1 pandemic.

A team of researchers from Saint Louis University collected and analyzed survey responses from approximately 2,000 school nurses serving primarily elementary, middle, and high schools in 26 states to ascertain whether schools were prepared for another pandemic, particularly focusing on infectious disease disasters. Pandemic preparedness is critical not only because of ramifications of the 2009 H1N1 pandemic, but also because of the threat of a future pandemic or an outbreak of an emerging infectious disease, such as severe acute respiratory syndrome. School preparedness for all types of disasters, including biological events, is mandated by the U.S. Department of Education.

Advertisement

The team found that less than one-third of schools (29.7 percent) stockpile any personal protective equipment, and nearly a quarter (22.9 percent) have no staff members trained on the school's disaster plan. One-third (33.8 percent) of schools report training students on infection prevention less than once per year. Only 1.5 percent of schools report stockpiling medication in anticipation of another pandemic. On a positive note, although only 2.2 percent of schools require school nurses to receive the annual influenza vaccine, the majority (73.7 percent) reported having been vaccinated for the 2010/2011 season.

"Findings from this study suggest that most schools are even less prepared for an infectious disease disaster, such as a pandemic, compared to a natural disaster or other type of event," says Terri Rebmann, PhD, RN, CIC, lead study author and associate professor of Environmental and Occupational Health at the Saint Louis University School of Public Health. "Despite the recent H1N1 pandemic that disproportionately affected school-age children, many schools do not have plans to adequately address a future biological event."
Advertisement

The researchers conclude that U.S. schools must continue to address gaps in infectious disease emergency planning, including developing better plans, coordinating these plans with local and regional disaster response agency plans, and testing the plan through disaster drills and exercises. Whenever possible, school nurses should be involved in these planning efforts, as healthcare professionals can best inform school administrators about unique aspects of pandemic planning that need to be included in school disaster plans.

Source: Eurekalert
Advertisement

Advertisement
News A-Z
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
What's New on Medindia
Baldness can be Cured and Prevented: let us see How!
Drinking Beer or Wine Every Day Could Cause Age-related Diseases
Low-Calorie Diet for Diabetes
View all
News Archive
Date
Category
Advertisement
News Category

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

Most Popular on Medindia

How to Reduce School Bag Weight - Simple Tips Accident and Trauma Care Calculate Ideal Weight for Infants Noscaphene (Noscapine) Pregnancy Confirmation Calculator Find a Doctor Find a Hospital Blood Pressure Calculator Blood Donation - Recipients Drug - Food Interactions
This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use