Reports of a SARS-like killer respiratory disease should spark pandemic plan update

The World Health Organization is not ready to issue any special instructions related to this coronavirus that has appeared in Saudi Arabia.  “As with any new virus, this is of concern to us and we’re watching it very closely,” WHO spokesperson Gregory Hartl said Sunday.

As a business continuity planner, I recommend that businesses, governments and other organizations take the opportunity, right now, to update their pandemic plans.

Today, while it is making news, pull the plan up:

  • Review and correct names and contact information
  • Review list of back-up
  • Review list of priorities
  • Send out your requests for information
  • Find out if your ability to work from home has changed
  • Remind your colleagues of the plan and ask for a review
  • Ask for a meeting to discuss running an exercise or formal awareness program

Take the time to do this when people are thinking about communicable disease and the impact of SARS.  This coronavirus may amount to nothing more than “a blip on the radar” but it should give you a push to get your plans updated.

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