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Kansas City Preparing for Pandemic Flu

By Kelley Weiss

http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/kcur/local-kcur-564505.mp3

Kansas City, MO – Tonight, Wednesday Feb. 7, William Jewell College will sponsor a lecture with the director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy, Dr. Michael Osterholm. Locally officials are getting ready for a pandemic flu outbreak. KCUR's Kelley Weiss reports.

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Dr. Rex Archer, Kansas City Health Department director, says the city is including new community-level recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control in its plan to prepare for pandemic flu. The CDC's suggestions focus on limiting contact between people during an outbreak - by asking people to stay home when sick, cancelling school or changing workplace environments. Archer says it's important to start planning now.

Rex Archer: "It'll be easier to take action earlier because the discussions have already occurred and businesses and others can't say we weren't prepared for this because all of this is out there now in the public."

Archer says if an outbreak does occur families should have reserves of non-perishable food and water as well as being ready to work from home to avoid getting sick. He says planning and public education are two key components for preparing for pandemic flu.

Funding for health care coverage on KCUR has been provided by the Health Care Foundation of Greater Kansas City.

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