This Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services (ACCHS) Pandemic Response Toolkit (Toolkit) may be useful for Member Services in planning for and responding to pandemics.
- It is well-known how contagious the influenza and COVID-19 viruses are and that distancing from other people is a key way to reduce the risk of spreading viruses. This is often difficult in Aboriginal communities given the strong connection to family and social ways of life. However, these family and social linkages are important assets and help build resilience so health professionals need to think of ways that keep this connection while also reducing the spread of diseases.
- Community consultation after the 2009 Influenza pandemic emphasised the importance of giving information in a clear and simple way, while showing respect for local culture. ACCHS know the best ways that their respective community will respond to messaging. The most important thing is to be consistent to avoid confusion.
- There are people in the community who are more at risk of getting the flu or associated complications. These are pregnant women, babies and children, people with other chronic diseases (heart disease, kidney disease, respiratory disease) and Elders. It is also important to note that some people may have chronic diseases that have not been diagnosed. It is important to note who may need additional support during a pandemic.