The national strategy against pandemic influenza essentially consists of 3 prongs: (i) effective surveillance, (ii) mitigation of the pandemic’s impact, and (iii) render the population immune through vaccination. When the pandemic hits Singapore, the response plan aims to achieve the following 3 outcomes: (i) maintenance of essential services to limit social and economic disruption, (ii) reduction of morbidity and mortality through antiviral treatment, and (iii) slow and limit the spread of influenza to reduce the surge on healthcare services. The biggest challenge will come from managing the surge of demand on healthcare services. A high level of preparedness will help healthcare services better cope with the surge.
The last influenza pandemics occurred in 1957 and 1968. Few remember the pandemic in 1968 in Singapore as it was relatively mild.
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