Pandemic Flu Guidelines
Pandemic flu is a form of influenza that spreads rapidly to affect most countries and regions around the world. Unlike the 'ordinary' flu that occurs every winter in the UK, pandemic flu can occur at any time of year. Pandemics of influenza have occurred sporadically throughout history — three times in the last hundred years.
Pandemics of flu are due to the emergence of a new flu virus, which is markedly different from recently circulating strains. Though the symptoms will be similar to those of 'ordinary flu' they are likely to be more severe because few, if any, people will have immunity or protection against it. Each pandemic is different and until the virus starts circulating, it is impossible to predict its full effects. A quarter of the population may be affected, perhaps more.
These guidelines have been prepared by the Advisory Group on Communicable Diseases in consultation with the Health Protection Agency. Their purpose is to outline the responsibilities of the University, the Colleges and the Health Protection Agency, which works on behalf of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Primary Care Trusts. This web site describes how these agencies interact, and advises how to access further information.
With an issue as new and uncertain as pandemic flu, appropriate and effective communication is essential. Lack of communication can result in potentially dangerous misinformation. In contrast, the press and media can prove a useful tool for disseminating health and safety information quickly. All enquiries regarding Cambridge University's management of pandemic flu should be directed to the University's Office of Communications, which can be reached on 01223 332300 (out of hours 07970 291007).
External Guidance and Information
Further guidance and frequently-updated information is available from: