Prepared Citizens

Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

  • Previous Posts

  • Michael Osterholm Quotes:

    “What we need to be doing now is the basic planning of how we get our communities through 12 to 18 months of a pandemic.”

    “Ninety-five out of 100 will live. But with the nation in crisis, will we have food and water? Are we going to have police and security? Will people come to work at all?”

    “It's the perfect setup. Then you put air travel in and it could be around the world overnight.”

    “We can predict now 12 to 18 months of stress of watching loved ones die, of wondering if you are going to have food on the table the next day. Those are all things that are going to mean that we are going to have to plan -- unlike any other crisis that we have had in literally the last 80-some years in this country.”

  • US Health and Human Services

    Secretary Michael Leavitt

    "If there is one message on pandemic preparedness that I could leave today that you would remember, it would be this:

    Any community that fails to prepare with the expectation that the federal government or for that matter the state government will be able to step forward and come to their rescue at the final hour will be tragically wrong,

    not because government will lack a will, not because we lack a collective wallet, but because there is no way that you can respond to every hometown in America at the same time."
  • Joseph C. Napoli, MD of Resiliency LLC

    "I think a new meaning is evolving for resiliency and resilience.

    In some contexts the words are being used to mean the strength to resist being impacted by an adverse event rather than either the “capacity to rebound” or “act of rebounding” from adversity.

    Therefore, resiliency and resilience appear to be assuming the meaning of fortitude, that is, “the strength or firmness of mind that enables a person to encounter danger with coolness and courage or to bear pain or adversity without despondency” as defined in the Webster’s Third New International Dictionary.

    If so, we are coming full circle with science accepting a religious moral virtue – fortitude – as written in the Bible’s Book of Wisdom"




  • Faith Based Resources

    John Piper
    Jonathan Edwards
    Reformation
    Pink-Saving Faith
    Pink-Christian Ethics

    "Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves"
    (2 Corinthians 13:5).

    Why Faith Groups Must Care

    When the Darkness Will Not Lift by John Piper

    Stand

    Be Not Afraid
    Overcoming the fear of Death
    by Johann Christoph Arnold







    While I am not a professional journalist, I do embrace the code of ethics put forth by the Society of Professional Journalists and the statement of purpose by the Association of Health Care Journalists and above all else I strive to "do no harm".


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  • Definitions

    from Wikipedia



    Pandemic Influenza


    An influenza pandemic is an epidemic of the influenza virus that spreads on a worldwide scale and infects a large proportion of the human population.

    In contrast to the regular seasonal epidemics of influenza, these pandemics occur irregularly, with the 1918 Spanish flu the most serious pandemic in recent history.

    Pandemics can cause high levels of mortality, with the Spanish influenza being responsible for the deaths of over 50 million people.

    There have been about 3 influenza pandemics in each century for the last 300 years. The most recent ones were the Asian Flu in 1957 and the Hong Kong Flu in 1968.



    Seasonal Influenza


    Flu season is the portion of the year in which there is a regular outbreak in flu cases.

    It occurs during the cold half of the year in each hemisphere.

    Flu activity can sometimes be predicted and even tracked geographically. While the beginning of major flu activity in each season varies by location, in any specific location these minor epidemics usually take about 3 weeks to peak and another 3 weeks to significantly diminish.

    Individual cases of the flu however, usually only last a few days. In some countries such as Japan and China, infected persons sometimes wear a surgical mask out of respect for others.



    Avian (Bird) Flu
    Avian influenza,

    sometimes Avian flu, and commonly Bird flu refers to "influenza caused by viruses adapted to birds."


    "Bird flu" is a phrase similar to "Swine flu", "Dog flu", "Horse flu", or "Human flu" in that it refers to an illness caused by any of many different strains of influenza viruses that have adapted to a specific host.

    All known viruses that cause influenza in birds belong to the species: Influenza A virus.

    All subtypes (but not all strains of all subtypes) of Influenza A virus are adapted to birds, which is why for many purposes avian flu virus is the Influenza A virus (note that the "A" does not stand for "avian").
    Adaptation is non-exclusive.

    Being adapted towards a particular species does not preclude adaptations, or partial adaptations, towards infecting different species.

    In this way strains of influenza viruses are adapted to multiple species, though may be preferential towards a particular host.

    For example, viruses responsible for influenza pandemics are adapted to both humans and birds.

    Recent influenza research into the genes of the Spanish Flu virus shows it to have genes adapted to both birds and humans; with more of its genes from birds than less deadly later pandemic strains.

    H5N1 Strain


    Influenza A virus subtype H5N1, also known as A(H5N1) or simply H5N1, is a subtype of the Influenza A virus which can cause illness in humans and many other animal species.

    A bird-adapted strain of H5N1, called HPAI A(H5N1) for "highly pathogenic avian influenza virus of type A of subtype H5N1", is the causative agent of H5N1 flu, commonly known as "avian influenza" or "bird flu".

    It is enzootic in many bird populations, especially in Southeast Asia. One strain of HPAI A(H5N1) is spreading globally after first appearing in Asia.

    It is epizootic (an epidemic in nonhumans) and panzootic (affecting animals of many species, especially over a wide area), killing tens of millions of birds and spurring the culling of hundreds of millions of others to stem its spread.

    Most references to "bird flu" and H5N1 in the popular media refer to this strain.



    As of the July 25, 2008 FAO Avian Influenza Disease Emergency Situation Update, H5N1 pathogenicity is continuing to gradually rise in wild birds in endemic areas but the avian influenza disease situation in farmed birds is being held in check by vaccination.

    Eleven outbreaks of H5N1 were reported worldwide in June 2008 in five countries (China, Egypt, Indonesia, Pakistan and Vietnam) compared to 65 outbreaks in June 2006 and 55 in June 2007.

    The "global HPAI situation can be said to have improved markedly in the first half of 2008 [but] cases of HPAI are still underestimated and underreported in many countries because of limitations in country disease surveillance systems".





    Pandemic Severity Index


    The Pandemic Severity Index (PSI) is a proposed classification scale for reporting the severity of influenza pandemics in the United States.

    The PSI was accompanied by a set of guidelines intended to help communicate appropriate actions for communities to follow in potential pandemic situations. [1]

    Released by the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on February 1, 2007, the PSI was designed to resemble the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale





    From the Massachusetts Health and Human Services



    Isolation


    refers to separating people who are ill from other people to prevent the spread of a communicable disease.



    Quarantine


    refers to separating and restricting the movement of people who have been exposed to a communicable disease and are not yet ill.
  • Additional Information

    Creative Commons License
    Prepared Citizens by Catherine "Jackie" Mitchell is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.
    Based on a work at http://www.preparedcitizens.org.




    The posts on this site are subject to change. Mostly due to errors in spelling or grammar. I never said I am a professional journalist. I have new appreciation for the job that they do. Also, not all comments made by others will make it onto this site. Comments that advertise a commercial product do not get posted most of the time.


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  • standingfirm

Prescription medications – the real problem

Posted by preparedcitizens on February 21, 2008

We have a problem….I have a problem.

First hand awareness has allowed me to have a better grasp on the issue.

There is a depth of preparedness I really did not want to see. I covered my eyes because it is, yet again, a huge issue…almost unsolvable, so I could not think about it.

Let me back up a bit…

I suffer from depression, for the last 20 years or so I have had several episodes of deep depression. I take an antidepressant for this condition, and truly the drug has been an amazing tool for me. I don’t say “cure” and I attribute any healings that I have experienced in my life to my God. So far, He has not blessed me with a complete and miraculous healing in this area so I still suffer.

I do recognize that God gives people gifts and talents so that they can do some amazing things and there are some gifted and talented scientists who develop medications that we can take to relieve our suffering, prolong and improve the quality of our life.….so I have taken my medication dutifully over the past decade+.

I have had some marvelously productive years and I never thought of stopping my medication. I would have taken it for the rest of my life.

Realizing that a pandemic is probably going to wreak havoc on the delivery systems in this country due to absenteeism and the deaths of those we count on now, I have had to do some thinking about the “deep preparations” that I need to make.

What will I do if my medication regimen is disrupted?

So many thousands and thousands of people will be potentially affected by this.

Heart medications, diabetes medications, testing supplies….the list goes on and on. Even glancing at the list, leads us into other areas that I will not lay out here, not yet.

Part of the problem is that we are only allowed to obtain x amount of medication over y amount of time and that may not cover us during the waves of influenza and the amount of recovery time that will be needed for our delivery systems. Stockpiling medications locally at our neighborhood pharmacies would be the safest thing to do. And, yet again, with everyone in town suddenly obtaining their meds from the same place and the pharmacy not being able to be resupplied, the pharmacy itself will close rather quickly unless this is aggressively addressed pre-pandemically. Perhaps it has been and I am just not privy to the answers….but I need to know what is or is not being done so that I can make wise decisions now.

So, short of full knowledge, and then in trying to solve this problem for my own family (some of us take the same medications), I sought to eliminate my medication now in order to stockpile them ahead of time, before the stress of a pandemic, when I would need them most. And quite honestly, I thought that I could cover others in case I could stay off of mine. I had no trouble at all eliminating the medication from my system. I had little to no side effects. That was not a problem and I could probably figure out a regimen of months on and months tapering….

The problem with this is that, while I am not trapped by not being able to eliminate the medication, I am trapped by my condition…I like so many others are on these things for some very good reasons, without them we suffer and in the case of heart medications etc., people die without them.

This is why I press to have our presidential candidates address pandemic issues. We need to hear how these things are being addressed, are they being addressed? If I am on my own in this too, I need to know. I have a right to know.

Certainly, I am not aware of the countless intricacies surrounding this issue. For example, if insurance companies allowed people to obtain 6 months, or better yet a years worth, of medication at one time and allowed us to obtain refills at the 6 month point, we could remain supplied. But the insurance companies would have to pay out for these prescriptions and doing so may cripple them.

 Thinking more of people with physical conditions that require medication, there has to be a way to mitigate the potential lives lost. But, yes, thinking too of us who suffer from illnesses that wreak havoc on our lives and the lives of those around us….we need to solve this problem or know its solution now.

I would urge everyone to talk to their physicians about this and call their insurance companies. Pressure from us will force change while silence can kill. We need to advocate for those who cannot.

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