Building a Continuity Plan for Pandemic Influenza: Adapting BC to Special Needs

How would you deal with a pandemic in order to keep your organisation operational? Would you split departments into two physically separated units to increase the probability that at least half the employees could still work – or have ten per cent of the workforce move to remote homeworking? The one day Pandemic Influenza business continuity course from the DRI gives participants targeted training on understanding and handling these situations. Yet while influenza is already a real threat to business continuity and productivity, the material in this course has further ranging application too.

Influenza A (H1N1) and Avian Influenza (H5N1) are both on the danger list established by the World Health Organisation. To be prepared for and dealt with effectively, they require a specialised methodology that takes into account the particular nature of these threats. The starting point is to understand what these diseases are, how they act and the damage they can do when they spread. This allows the assessment of organisational risk and the critical organisational functions that may suffer. From this, procedures and responsibilities can be clarified and configured, and a pandemic specific strategy and plan constructed.

Besides dealing directly with influenza and pandemics, the course also gives valuable insights into how to adapt the general principles of business continuity to fashion an approach to solve one major problem in particular. The exercises of thinking through the differences involved in planning for a pandemic, and the step by step guide can all help participants to better understand and adapt to other specific business continuity challenges as well. In addition to the classroom instruction, the course includes reading exercises of recommended methods, the avail ability of downloadable resources, and a range of tools to help gather data, manage the project and produce a definitive pandemic business continuity plan.

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