Resolution on Pandemic Flu Preparedness


This resolution commends the Executive Branch, including the Department of Health and Human Services, and the Legislative Branch, as they continue to develop, and appropriate funds for preparedness plans relating to an outbreak of influenza. It also encourages state agencies to develop additional policies that will help states to be better prepared in the event of such an outbreak.

Resolution on Pandemic Flu Preparedness

WHEREAS, Influenza pandemics occurred three times in the previous century, and history and science suggest that the United States and the world will face at least one pandemic in this century; and

WHEREAS, A pandemic can cause severe illness, death, and disruption throughout the country and the world, and outbreaks can occur in many different locations all at the same time; and

WHEREAS, An informed and prepared public is essential to minimizing the health effects of a pandemic and the resulting consequences to society, and this is achieved through learning important health and safety information concerning pandemic influenza with material targeted for groups such as families, travelers, workers, communities, and health professionals; and

WHEREAS, A worldwide influenza pandemic could have a major effect on the global economy which directly impacts the economy of the United States as well as state and local governments including travel, trade, tourism, food, consumption, and eventually investment and financial markets; and

WHEREAS, Preparing for an influenza pandemic requires coordinated action at all levels of government—federal, state, and local—and all sectors of society, including businesses, schools, faith-based and community organizations, families, and individuals; and

WHEREAS, The federal government has committed to taking a leadership role in creating a prepared nation by monitoring international and domestic outbreaks, providing funding and technical assistance to foster state and local preparedness, stockpiling and distributing countermeasures, developing new treatments, and coordinating the national response; and

WHEREAS, The secretary of the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has committed to holding pandemic planning summits in all 50 states, assisting states to improve their level of preparedness; and

WHEREAS, The President of the United States has asked the United States Congress for emergency spending authority to prepare the United States against the possibility of a pandemic, and Congress has provided over $3 billion for that purpose in the federal “Defense Appropriations Act” for 2006, including funding for state and local planning purposes; and

WHEREAS, States and local communities are responsible under their own authorities for responding to an outbreak within their jurisdictions and having comprehensive pandemic preparedness plans and measures in place to protect their citizens; and

WHEREAS, Consistent with its authorities and availability of funding, HHS may provide additional resources for state and local influenza planning and preparedness activities, and may require the identification and achievement of specific preparedness goals by states and local governments as a condition of financial assistance; and

WHEREAS, Preparedness plans must be continuously exercised and updated to make certain that they work and to achieve a stronger level of preparedness; and

WHEREAS, Pandemic preparedness will help communities deal with any type of medical emergency and will have lasting benefits for the health of our nation and economic security.

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT The {insert state legislative body here} encourages {insert state department of health or appropriate state agency here} to adopt additional policies to better prepare {insert state} for a pandemic outbreak to protect the health of our citizens, to protect our economies as a result of a pandemic, and to remain vigilant in guarding against a pandemic; and to

(A) Augment state and local planning with state and local pandemic preparedness summits;

(B) Update {insert state}’s state pandemic programs based on guidance provided by HHS, the National Strategy for Pandemic Influenza, and any other guidance concerning the use of countermeasures necessary to address a pandemic;

(C) Assure that {insert state}’s operational plans for pandemic influenza are an integral element of the overall state and local emergency response plan that will coordinate effectively with emergency support, health and medical services, and the national incident management system;

(D) Ensure that {insert state} establishes a pandemic preparedness coordinating committee which represents governmental, public health, health care, emergency response, agriculture, education, business, communications, and community-based and faith-based sectors, as well as private citizens, and this committee will assist {insert state} in articulating strategic priorities and overseeing the development and execution of {insert state}’s operational plan;

(E) Provide the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) with a self-assessment of {insert state}’s readiness to receive a portion of available federal funds from the federal “Defense Appropriations Act” immediately; and

(F) Achieve specific preparedness goals, targets, and timelines as agreed to by HHS and CDC in order to receive additional federal funds.

Approved by ALEC Board of Directors on January 7, 2007.

Reapproved by ALEC Board of Directors on January 28, 2013