Time to dust off your credit union Pandemic Plan?

by: Robin Remines

Every year we are bombarded with notifications to get our annual flu shot. What used to be available only in the doctor’s office is now served up at your local Target or Rite Aid stores. But recently our health news has taken on a much more serious tone with the outbreaks of Ebola and the Enterovirus D68. – Preparedness starts at “home” (or in this case your credit union). If you haven’t touched your credit union Pandemic Plan since NCUA first required you to have one, then this post is for you.

Getting Out The Dust Pan

For most of us this isn’t the first time around the block with having to develop strategies for dealing with a health crisis and thankfully, we learned plenty over the past decade on how to approach this scenario. Originally, credit union’s developed their Pandemic Plans based on the spread of Avian Flu – not Ebola or some other highly contagious disease. The good news however is that many of your strategies will remain viable and simply need updating to reflect the current threat. Let’s look at 3 major areas to stay focused on as we wait for this situation to unfold.

1) Pandemic/Health Crisis Planning is different than “regular disasters” – In most disaster situations during the initial response and subsequent recovery efforts there is usually an effort to get people together. We want to count them, identify them, gather and speak with them. In most cases this is done by physically gathering in a specified physical location. In a health threat scenario, you DO NOT want to gather people together due to the threat of spreading contagions but you still need to count/identify/communicate by using alternate channels such as phone and/or text.


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