Pandemics like COVID-19 have long-lasting and significant impacts on global healthcare delivery and personnel. Healthcare Facilities have a core obligation to develop, appropriately resource, and execute a comprehensive pandemic preparedness program. Pandemic preparedness programs include the following basic components:
- Structure for Planning and Decision Making
- Development of a Written Pandemic Plan
- Elements of a Pandemic Plan
- Facility Communications
- Consumables and Durable Medical Equipment and Supplies
- Identification and Management of Ill Patients
- Visitor Access & Movement within the Facility
- Occupational Health
- Education and Training
- Healthcare Services/Surge Capacity
Pandemics affect the global healthcare delivery system, and as such can widely disrupt clinical capabilities to delivery care. Thankfully, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and United States Department of Health and Human Services have a variety of tools and resources to help both inpatient and outpatient healthcare facilities prepare for pandemics and other infectious diseases outbreaks. These tools should be used and regularly evaluated in all healthcare settings to prepare for future pandemics and to minimize their potential impacts to clinical care delivery.
This resource library contains a wide variety of tools, resources, and checklists to aid any healthcare facility with pandemic preparedness. Preparedness is not a time-limited activity, but rather an ongoing process that must be supported by the facility’s executive leadership. These resources are meant to serve as a comprehensive reference for any preparedness needs. With proper planning, healthcare facilities and providers can respond favorably to future threats from pathogens.