SLU Study Finds Schools Are Unprepared For Pandemics

ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – A new St. Louis University study finds a majority of schools are not ready for the next pandemic.

Dr. Terry Rebmann with SLU’s Institute for Biosecurity surveyed about 2000 school nurses across 26 states.

“Many schools are not very well-prepared for a pandemic or a biological event,” Rebmann said.

Only 48 percent of schools address pandemic preparedness and only 40 percent have updated their plans since the 2009 H1N1 pandemic.

Rebmann says schools need to have a written pandemic plan in order to be prepared to put interventions into place quickly when an event occurs and she says any plan works better when the school nurse is involved in the process.

“The main thing is, make sure the school nurses are really getting involved in their school disaster planning because that did seem to be the strongest predictor of schools being prepared in our study.”

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