A Digital View on Swine Flu

It’s no secret that the Government was preparing for a flu pandemic – featuring as high as it did in the 2008 National Risk Register. And although the actual outbreak came out of the blue, it’s been acknowledged that the UK was pretty well prepared both in clinical and communications terms.

The COI has been working for a number of months on pandemic flu preparedness (with the Department of Health as the lead department) because from the off the government recognised the importance of digital media for not only getting the word out but for also getting it back.

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Which Pro Should Go?

Been having an on-going chat with a colleague that you might find quite interesting. It’s about a ‘grey protocol’, meaning we both agree on an action but not who should lead the action.

The hypothetical scenario we are throwing around is a state of an emergency in the UK. It’s in an advanced stage; it’s dangerous out there. But don’t worry, we’ve anticipated this might happen and there’s been years of planning put in.

The web plays a major part in the government’s response [duh!] in getting information out there – good quality information, timely information and, crucially, well-placed information. Getting info into the [non-state sanctioned] places online that people are already using to monitor and discuss what’s going on is thus a top priority.

Herein lies a ‘grey protocol’: who goes in? A trained government official with communications or policy specialism, or a commercial contractor with an extensive social media portfolio?

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