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Staying Informed of Disease Occurences

This is an important part of getting through a pandemic, but it's not as biological as the other topics. You will need to have access to accurate and current information if you are going to make safe decisions as the situation progresses. Getting the news from your neighbor three doors down the road may not be enough.

If power is still up and running, getting information should be relatively easy, between TV, radio and the Internet. Most major news sites would carry details on a serious pandemic, though they may not put much effort into covering a smaller regional event. Find the best sources for local news as well, and bookmark them now.

Besides the standard news outlets, you can get more direct disaster information at some of these sites:

RSOE EDIS - http://hisz.rsoe.hu/alertmap/index2.php

This real-time disaster map of the world shows you all sorts of current events, from disease outbreaks and biological hazards to forest fires and earthquakes.

Global Incident Map - http://outbreaks.globalincidentmap.com/home.php

This is another map that marks a whole range of events, including a lot of disease incidents.

Healthmap.org - http://healthmap.org/en/

One last option, that focuses more on diseases as well as other health-related events.

You should also bookmark the CDC website (http://www.cdc.gov). They do have some current news but it's a really good site for symptoms, treatment and other disease information. Perhaps making a paper copy of their important disease pages might be a good way to keep these references available in the Internet goes out.

If power has been disrupted, you will have more difficulty staying up-to-date on pandemic news. Even if you have power from a generator, your Internet service can still be offline if the outage is widespread enough. You should plan to rely on radio in this case. Battery, solar or crank-powered radios are perfect. It would be a good idea to know which stations will offer the best news coverage so you're not getting lost on the dial trying to find a decent station when you're in a rush.

Mobile or land-line phone service may still be running for you, so you could also call friends or family members outside the disaster area to find out what's going on. Have their numbers handy.




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