Public Health Surveillance

An influenza pandemic is an international outburst of a new Influenza A virus. Pandemics occur as a result of the emergence of new viruses that spread fast and infect people in a sustained fashion. Avian influenza refers explicitly to the illness triggered by infection with Type A. bird influenza (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2014). During phase five of avian influenza infection, there are surveillance steps that are crucial in ensuring little or no further spread of the disease.

At this stage, it is a recommended action that all joint authorities initiate actions specifically described for investigations. It is also critical that these investigations are case-based, to allow for informed containment procedures that may begin to take infect after the declaration of infected statuses. At this point, it is an expectation that individuals in charge should contact the teams responsible for emergency response in the state to confirm if operations will exceed regular activities. These teams will activate all surveillance protocols and send word to military installations in North Carolina to initiate an investigation on affected areas. The coordinator in charge will then be responsible for updates on WHO and other organizations and the collection of other forms of data such as absenteeism in school, to per the requirement of the state and federal administration. Health departments in the locality will then determine specific information about the contamination in the quest to understand the virus and most targeted populations. The Immunization Branch in conjunction with the CBD will then study the efficacy of vaccines and implement control and containment protocols to significantly reduce the spread of the infections (Public Health, 2019).

It is the responsibility of both local and federal agencies to work hand in hand and assess the health status of the population and, put adequate measures in place to prevent the infection and spread of diseases. In the quest to achieve this fundamental objective, these agencies first ensure that the infrastructure in the regions are modern and systems are up to date by identifying funding sources and approving budgets for health departments. They are also responsible for the training of personnel to ensure that the workforce is competent. These resources, both human and financial will be crucial in fighting an attack. In a case like the phase five infection in North Carolina, these persons will be instrumental in conducting the critical investigations and proving the populations in affected regions with the necessary support, from medication to their basic needs.

Many factors are crucial in determining the success of the plan to prevent further infection of the virus. However, coordination and communication remain at the top of these aspects of the response. The establishment of a command center that will supply all information regarding the disease will be central to the achievement (Holloway et al., 2014). Also, it will be crucial that all teams be highly responsive and reliable before affected regions become too wide  that the emergency response teams cannot handle. Another factor that might deter the success of the strategy is the establishment of a support system for the population. It will make a lot of difference if the people in the region are calm, attentive and have faith in the system, to avoid panic and people randomly roaming the streets.

With the establishment of a command center and a coordinating committee with individuals from all relevant authorities, the chances of success remain considerably high. Also, a good stockpile of medication and basic needs like water, food, and shelter will create a sense of calmness in the population, allowing the competent teams to use updated demographic profiles to conduct investigations, implement immunization procedures and prevent any further spread of the disease (Fineberg, 2014). The government’s plan is well furnished and detailed, enough to handle an outbreak of any kind. It would, however, improve the strategy if the administration initiates regular training programs to enhance the skills and readiness of the workforce.



Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2014). Interim Pre-Pandemic Planning Guidance: Community Strategy for Pandemic Influenza Mitigation in the United States. Atlanta, GA: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; 2007.

Fineberg, H. V. (2014). Pandemic preparedness and response—lessons from the H1N1 influenza of 2009. New England Journal of Medicine, 370(14), 1335-1342.

Holloway, R., Rasmussen, S. A., Zaza, S., Cox, N. J., Jernigan, D. B., & Influenza Pandemic Framework Workgroup. (2014). Updated preparedness and response framework for influenza pandemics. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report: Recommendations and Reports, 63(6), 1-18.

Public Health, C. (2019). NC DPH: N.C. Pandemic Influenza Plan. Retrieved from