The Pandemic: Cal-Nevada Disaster Response Urges Preparations
Norm Hardin, Disaster Coordinator for the California-Nevada Annual Conference, is urging each Methodist church to start preparations now for the flu.
"We know that the flu is coming this fall - and it may be bad," Hardin says.
The World Health Organization has now declared the H1N1 2009 influenza virus, against which the human population has no immunity, as a "Stage 6-Pandemic," meaning the virus has spread worldwide, with more than 160,000 cases reported and 1,154 deaths. This disease occurs primarily among young persons, including the previously healthy.
Presently most people recover without the need for hospitalization or medical care, but this fall new and more deadly strains of H1N1 may develop and spread.
"Your church should prepare for the pandemic now, following procedures prepared by the Conference Disaster Response Ministry," warns Hardin. "These procedures are intended to enable churches to more effectively minister to their members and communities," he says.
For more information go to the Conference's disaster response website at www.cnumc.org/disasterresponse, then select "Disaster Response Pandemic Procedures."
Magnetic refrigerator cards promoting the website address were made available at this year's Annual Conference Session and still may be obtained through the Conference office of United Methodist Volunteers in Mission (firstname.lastname@example.org or 916.374-1584).