The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has released an online storybook with stories of survivors, family, and friends of victims of 1918 and 1957 influenza pandemics.
The 1918 pandemic claimed millions of lives worldwide and this year marks its 90th anniversary. The 1957 pandemic killed more than 70,000 people. The storybook includes videos and narratives, along with photos from storytellers.
CDC Director Julie Gerberding said in a press release: “Complacency is enemy number one when it comes to preparing for another influenza pandemic...These stories, told so eloquently by survivors, family members, and friends from past pandemics, serve as a sobering reminder of the devastating impact that influenza can have and reading them is a must for anyone involved in public health preparedness.”
The CDC plans to update the book every quarter and welcomes additional submissions regarding the 1918 and 1957 pandemics as well as the 1968 pandemic. The 1968 pandemic was called the Hong Kong flu pandemic, and it killed more than 30,000 people, according to the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). More information on recent pandemics can be found on the HHS Web site.
Find out about pandemic preparedness in the September 2008 issue of Security Management.