[LINK] Pandemic pandemonium

Jan Whitaker jwhit at melbpc.org.au
Mon Jun 8 10:30:30 EST 2009

At 09:20 PM 7/06/2009, Tom Worthington wrote:
>In a major emergency, such as a pandemic, all that the authorities
>can provide to the community is advice. There are not sufficient
>resources to provide each individual with material assistance. It is
>therefore important that useful advice is provided. The web would be
>a useful way to provide such advice, if we could to learn to use it

I don't think the website distribution was at all the problem. The 
problem IS that the systems of communication of information aren't 
integrated and people are getting really cheesed off about how 
ineffective that part is. Ring this number, then get referred to 
another who refers you back to where you started. If they would 
simplify the system, perhaps with a central point of contact, then it 
would make sense. But that story of a call centre NOT provided with 
even basic info about the closest or appropriate hospital or clinic 
for testing was just out and out incompetence in design/training/planning.

Not everyone has web access. Stressed mothers with sick kids should 
not be expected to 'log on'. The phone should be the immediate point 
of contact. It allows for people to question and get to specifics of 
their own situation.

My guess is that many people are finding their way through and have 
competent local services. But the anecdotal stories like the one 
David pointed to are still a worry. And if there is no standard or if 
the government keeps changing the protocol, it's no wonder people are 
confused. There must be a system for updating those who are taking 
the calls when the rules change.


Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
jwhit at janwhitaker.com
blog: http://janwhitaker.com/jansblog/
business: http://www.janwhitaker.com

Our truest response to the irrationality of the world is to paint or 
sing or write, for only in such response do we find truth.
~Madeline L'Engle, writer

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