Pandemic Influenza

The world is now in the post-pandemic period with the H1N1 (2009) virus behaving as a seasonal influenza virus. Seasonal influenza viruses are an important cause of morbidity and mortality, especially in risk groups which include young children and pregnant women.

The threat from Influenza A(H5N1) virus remains as this virus continues to circulate in birds and is causing occasional human cases. In addition to recurring influenza pandemics that occur at unpredictable intervals, over 70% of new and emerging infectious diseases are largely originating in animals. The post-pandemic period thus provides an opportunity to strengthen national public health systems and ensure that communities are prepared for a potential pandemic or disease outbreak.