The AsiaFluCap Project
Operational planning to implement strategic pandemic influenza plans remains a major challenge. This project analysed how resources can be deployed effectively and efficiently in countries in Asia in the event of a pandemic. To date, an important challenge has been that there is no universally accepted, organised method for evaluating preparedness.
This research project builds upon and extends an innovative pilot research project in Thailand by LSHTM and IHPP that linked coherently quantitative analyses of resource gaps with qualitative assessments of governance constraints given different epidemiological scenarios.
The goal of the project, funded by the European Commission was to provide a framework to evaluate health system operational capacity and, in 4 settings (Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand, Taiwan), systematically determine operational capacity gaps in order support containment and mitigation of pandemic influenza. With additional support from the Rockefeller Foundation, the study was expanded to cover two additional countries: Lao PDR and Cambodia.
Operational capacity gaps were determined under four hypothetical pandemic scenarios. Resources available were determined in order to address containment and mitigation outcomes. Resources were mapped at two levels (the enabling environment and the organisational environment tasked with implementation). Governance arrangements were evaluated according to the same pandemic influenza scenarios. The scenarios were drawn upon in evaluations of each setting to ensure lessons learned are coherent.
With ministerial support across the sites, the results from this work inform revisions of strategic and operational pandemic influenza plans, provide a critical resource for the war room in the event of a pandemic, and inform decisions about future resource allocation.