|Novel H1N1 Influenza|
(September 7, 2009) The following news was
released by OSHA on September 4:
Additional Links for Further Information:
o OSHA: Pandemic
o OSHA: Pandemic Influenza
oNew England Journal of Medicine: H1N1 Influenza Center
o Center for
Infectious Disease Research & Policy (U of
o Center for Infectious Disease Research & Policy (U ofMinn.): Swine Influenza
(August 31, 2009) An updated AFA-CWA Bulletin on Novel H1N1 Influenza is now available. This update provides the most recent information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on the pandemic’s severity, signs and symptoms of illness, and ways that flight attendants can minimize their risks of exposing themselves to the virus. You can download the update here.
(August 28, 2009) An updated AFA-CWA Bulletin on Novel H1N1 Flu is now available. This update provides the most recent information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on the pandemic’s severity, signs and symptoms of illness, and ways that flight attendants can minimize their risks of exposing themselves to the virus. You can download the update here.
(June 11, 2009) The Associated Press this morning is reporting that the “World Health Organization told its member nations it was declaring a swine flu pandemic Thursday — the first global flu epidemic in 41 years — as infections climbed in the United States, Europe, Australia, South America and elsewhere. In a statement sent to member countries, WHO said it decided to raise the pandemic warning level from phase 5 to 6 — its highest alert — after holding an emergency meeting on swine flu with its experts. The long-awaited pandemic decision is scientific confirmation that a new flu virus has emerged and is quickly circling the globe. It will trigger drugmakers to speed up production of a swine flu vaccine and prompt governments to devote more money toward efforts to contain the virus.” There will be a Live webcast of the WHO press conference at Noon EDT today, presumably to announce the change in pandemic status. What a shift to Phase 6 of the pandemic warning level will mean to Flight Attendants is unclear at this time, but stay tuned for further updates as the situation unfolds.
(June 8, 2009) The WHO today issued Influenza A(H1N1) - update 45: “As of 06:00 GMT, 8 June 2009, 73 countries have officially reported 25,288 cases of influenza A(H1N1) infection, including 139 deaths.” Last week, on June 5, 2009, the U.S. CDC issued new Interim Guidance for Airlines Regarding Flight Crews Arriving from Domestic and International Areas Affected by Swine Influenza. This guidance offers several useful recommendations for dealing with potentially infected passengers and should be shared with your carrier’s inflight operations and medical departments. For example, ”[c]rew members should wear impermeable, disposable gloves onboard aircraft if they need to have direct contact with potentially contaminated surfaces such as airplane seats, tray tables, and lavatories used by ill passengers;” when “having close contact with an ill person [crew members] should keep their interactions with the ill person as brief as possible and may choose to wear a facemask or a N95 respirator on a voluntary basis;” and “flight deck crew should ensure that the aircraft air conditioning/ventilation system stays on until all passengers and crew have disembarked in order to maximize continued removal of virus particles from the cabin air.”
(May 20, 2009) The Association of Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA-CWA) testified May 20th on Capitol Hill regarding concerns that arose after a recent public health emergency and the summer travel outlook for this year. The U.S. House of Representatives Subcommittee on Aviation conducted the hearing which focused on aviation consumer issues and emergency contingency planning during public health emergencies.
(May 8, 2009) At this time, the WHO has NOT updated the Influenza A (H1N1) pandemic alert from phase 5 to phase 6. Here is the latest on the current situation per the WHO: As of 16:00 GMT, 8 May 2009, 25 countries have officially reported 2500 cases of influenza A (H1N1) infection
(April 30, 2009) An update to the AFA-CWA Swine Flu bulletin is now available (the April 27, 2009 version has been retired). This update includes the latest list of countries with confirmed cases, and notes that the US now has one flu-caused fatality.
(April 29, 2009) The CDC has posted two guidance documents of interest to airline crews:
(April 29, 2009 WHO Update) Level of influenza pandemic alert raised from phase 4 to 5
Download: AFA bulletin on swine flu 31aug09.pdf