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level 1 - tavaline gripipuhang

Level 1 - Description of Conditions and Basic Planning criteria

At this point, we take the planning tree in the specific direction of influenza preparations. This does not preclude making additional plans for possible hazards specific to your own situation and planning for them as well. There will usually be much overlap between them. A good example of a situation specific plan would be those folks in New Orleans who survived the rapidly rising flood waters which chased and trapped them into the attics of their homes because they had previously experienced bad flooding and had stored an axe in the attic. They used the axe to cut through the roof and escape. Others, unfortunately were trapped and drowned in their attics.

The conditions I am using for planning at Level 1 is that there is a pandemic flu circulating around the world. It is moderately contagious, and of low to moderate virulence. Those people who take sick with it experience a bad case (perhaps the worst of their lives) of flu, but except for those who are candidates for trouble with seasonal flu, they eventually recover without further problems.

Although there will be some slowdowns in stores or service related businesses due to high absentee rates, in general, things continue to function much as they normally do. Some spot shortages may occur locally in stores where demand for sickroom supplies such as Tylenol or tissues exceeds the supply, but this will be a local issue, not a national or international one. Pharmacies these days don’t seem to run excess shelf stock, and can run short of some medicines on even normal days, depending on next morning delivery to fill holes. Be aware that you may need to be familiar with more than one pharmacy in your area, or else be prepared to be given a short fill on some flu related prescriptions and then come back in a day or two for the rest.

Doctor’s offices and hospitals (in the US, I don’t know about the rest of the world) will be stressed, and some spot issues with hospital emergency rooms going to bypass status will develop, but in general medical support, advice by phone and emergency treatment for those who become seriously ill should still be available. (Digression for a hint: The hospital in my area is a major trauma center which catches medivac helicopters, ambulances and walk-ins to the ER. The basic priority structure is the same - helicopter, ambulance, walk-in. If you or someone in your family is in need of ER care, it is better to call for an ambulance. They will be seen and treated HOURS sooner).

In planning for this level, I feel it would be prudent to assume that all of the members of your household are down with the flu simultaneously. Thus, one who is planning for this level will need to determine what supplies it will take to get through such a situation.

Reasonable Preparations for Level 1

As stated previously, in Level 1 planning, we assume that the impact of the pandemic wave is roughly equivalent to that of a very bad seasonal flu outbreak. Since we have experienced these conditions many times before, the following conditions can be expected to occur:

1) Doctor’s offices and hospitals will saturate with walk-ins and phone calls seeking treatment guidance.
2) Hospitals will fill to capacity with patients who are experiencing serious impact from the flu and are in need of professional supportive care.
3) Pharmacies may experience spot shortages of the most frequently prescribed medicines
4) Supermarkets and other outlets may experience spot shortages of a wide variety of over-the-counter medicines and sick room supplies, including the basic remedies such as Tylenol, Expectorant cough medicines, decongestants, tissues and many, many others
5) Some businesses will experience slowdowns or operational problems due to high absentee rates
6) Doctor’s offices, hospitals, drug stores and supermarkets may be places at which you experience a higher than usual probability of being exposed to the influenza which is circulating.
7) Utilities (water,gas, electricity and telephone) may be reasonably expected to continue in normal operation, or at worst experience minor disturbances in service which will be corrected quickly.

Thus, the goal of Level 1 preparation will be to insure that you and your family have all of the supplies on-hand that you can anticipate needing in the event of such conditions. As I stated previously, my planning criterion for this level is the entire family is down with the flu simultaneously. Provisioning for this level is intended to cover this contingency, plus one additional outside problem, such as a severe winter storm.

While each individual doing the planning must determine his own requirements, the common areas to plan for are:

Food: There should be sufficient food in stock at all times to allow for proper feeding of the entire family for a period of at least two weeks, also assuming illness is rampant within the house. Thus, one should stock not only sufficient quantities of the normal day-to-day foods that the family would eat when healthy, but also sufficient foods to deal with possible major influenza as well. Thus, one should make sure to stock easy to prepare and easy to digest foods such as cream of wheat or rice cereals, dehydrated soup mixes, soft drinks, oral rehydration concoctions and anything else you or your Doctor normally recommend for an ill individual who may be nauseous, have diarrhea, or just be almost non-functional.

Medicines: Within this category fall both maintenance medicines and flu medicines. One should make sure that they have on hand, at all times, their normal maintenance medicines, plus an additional 2 week reserve that they never tap into, except to rotate it with fresh stock when they refill their prescriptions. I know that these days, it is hard to build a reserve supply of medicines when HMO’s literally monitor usage to the nearest pill, but there are still strategies with which one can accumulate a reserve (starting with purchasing the meds for cash, if possible). Then one should make sure to have whatever additional medicines could be anticipated to be needed on-hand in the event of serious illness (i.e a diabetic may need additional insulin to cover glycemic stresses due to flu, or may need additional oral meds to prevent HHNS [hyperglycemic-hyperosmolic nonketotic syndrome - very common in type II diabt]etics under severe illness conditions]). You should enlist the assistance of your Doctor in planning out what to have on-hand for this situation. It will be alot easier for the Doctor to speak to you by phone and tell you how to take a medicine which you have pre-positioned in your reserves than to have you visit his office or even call a prescription into a pharmacy for you to pick up.

Water: In a Level 1 situation, I would stock water out to fill the requirements of the entire family for the duration of the 2 week illness window. While I don’t anticipate losing water as part of any widespread failure of utilities, it is always possible that a local, or even household plumbing problem can shut down the supply till everyone is sufficiently well enough to tackle the repair.

Fuel for heat, Cooking, etc. - Here again, I don’t think that elaborate preparations in this regard are required for Level 1. Just enough to keep things running and livable in case of bad weather or some other possible hardware or localized system failure. You should already have provided for this in your Level 0 stock.

Batteries and Flashlights: Same as for fuel and heating supplies.

Information Resources: This would be a good time to compile a series of quick guides on what to do for anticipated health situatons, both flu in general, and the specific needs of any household members in particular. While the Web may still be fully available to you, how efficiently do you think you will be in looking up some critical care information for children or the elderly while you yourself are barely functional (I’ve had to do this once. It is really not what you want to be doing at that time). Pulling all of the information together into an easy to read and execute plan is something you should do now. It will also make sure that the first time you see the material is not during a crisis.

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trüki see kood alumisse tühja lahtrisse. aitäh :)