WHO Interim Protocol: Rapid operations to contain the initial emergence of pandemic influenza

Updated October 2007

Changes to this version of the protocol
This document replaces previous versions of the protocol. In brief, key changes include:

  • More emphasis on rapid containment and less on rapid response which is covered in WHO guidelines for invetigation of human cases of avian influenza A(H5N1) published in 2007.
  • An expanded discussion of the decision-making process.
  • Refinement of the containment strategy emphasizing the localized geographical approach and describing the key activities for Containment and Buffer Zones.
  • A proposed approach for estimating the duration of a containment operation.
  • New or updated annexes on ethical issues, non-pharmaceutical interventions, communications and laboratory preparedness. Annexes on antiviral stockpile planning and preparedness issues are under revision and and will be added in the near future.

The protocol will be updated and revised as new information becomes available and more detailed guidance and tools are developed.