Planning for Flu
More Federal input needed? Nonsense! Local areas need to step up to the plate and do their own planning. The Feds can't bail anyone out on this one. All they can do is withhold all federal funding from any hospital that doesn't make adequate plans.
The state and local EMAs (Emergency Management Agencies) have the responsibility to head up both state and local planning. They are the ones who should be pressuring hospitals and clinics to develop their plans. They are the ones who should be publicizing which hospitals are not stepping up to the plate on this issue.
An inaccuracy of the article: "No one has produced an effective flu vaccine." Well, of course they haven't. They can't until the virus transforms into the human-to-human transmittal form. Any vaccine based on the current genetic form of the virus will be ineffective against the human-to-human transmission form. Once the virus transforms, a vaccine can be developed, tested and provided - about a 1 year process. That's the state of the art. It can't be done any faster than that.
The reason "most of America's 5,000-odd hospitals are unprepared" is because the hospitals have decided to not prepare. Citizens in each hospital's cachement area should be volunteering to assist with preparations. If no preparations are being undertaken, the citizens should be complaining and forming protest groups. Publicize it. Force them to undertake preparation. Work together with their EMA to ensure adequate preparations for the potential influenza disaster.