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A pandemic is a global disease outbreak. It is determined by how the disease spreads, not how many deaths it causes.

For example when a new influenza A virus emerges, a flu pandemic can occur. Because the virus is new, the human population has little to no immunity against it. The virus spreads quickly from person-to-person worldwide.

H1N1 Cases Confirmed, June 3, 2009

UWSP monitors pandemic conditions and has Pandemic response plans developed. 



April 9, 2013 - New influenza A (H7N9) virus in China. The World Health Organization (WHO) first reported 3 human infections with a new influenza virus in China. Addition cases have been reported since. At this time, no cases of H7N9 outside of China have been reported. The virus has not been detected in people or birds in the United States. 
January 1, 2013 - Novel influenza A (H1N1) pandemic. Continue guidance below.
June 23, 2011 - Novel influenza A (H1N1) pandemic. Continue guidance below. 
August 10, 2010 - The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared that the novel H1N1 influenza pandemic is over and that it has "largely run its course." The 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic is now in a "post-pandemic" phase. Even with the welcomed announcement, WHO Director-General Dr. Margaret Chan cautioned that hte virus still warrants close monitoring and still poses a real danger to young people, pregnant women, and others with chronic health conditions. Dr. Chan's caution should be taking seriously.
Based on knowledge about past pandemics, the H1N1 virus is expected to continue to circulate as a seasonal virus for some years to come. It is expected that the virus vaccination will be included in the seasonal vaccination to be received. Therefore, most individuals should just require one vaccination.