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MAINE EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY
From the Director: It’s October. Know About the Flu
October 19, 2009
Last spring, a new flu virus was identified and quickly spread around the globe. Maine, along with the rest of the nation and the world, soon had confirmed cases of the “swine flu”, now known as “H1N1”.
The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention (MaineCDC), led by Dr. Dora Anne Mills, is leading the state’s actions to track the virus and mitigate its effects. The MaineCDC is also working with the health care community statewide on patient care and vaccination strategies. MEMA, the Department of Education and all other state agencies are committed to supporting MaineCDC.
Now that an H1N1 vaccine has been developed, a great deal of activity is going on at the County EMA level. County Directors are working along with regional vaccine coordinators and the three Regional Resource Centers to plan vaccine clinics around the state, organize volunteers and put plans in place for all the non-medical logistical elements of large-scale vaccine clinics. This epidemic has been one of the most demanding tasks taken on by County EMAs in recent years, and they have risen to the challenge.
MEMA also is working with the Governor’s Office, Maine EMS and Maine CDC to ensure that appropriately trained and licensed EMS and Health Care providers who volunteer their services to give vaccines at public clinics are covered by State liability protection and workers compensation programs. Lists of these volunteers are publicly available on the MEMA web site.
This virus will be with us for some time to come. But there are things we can all do to minimize its effect and meet this challenge.
Take steps to protect yourself and others from the flu:
We are learning more about H1N1 every day. Information will change, and advice will change. It’s critically important to keep up with those changes, so stay informed! Here are some ways to do that.
I began in September offering a monthly message here on the MEMA and Maine Prepares web sites to take a look together at some specific challenges facing Maine, and how Maine Prepares. I believe the preparedness steps we take to deal with H1N1, and the relationships we are strengthening through this process, will stand us in good stead for the months and even years to come.
Rob McAleer, Director, Maine Emergency Management Agency
Last update: 07/20/10
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