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Ethics and pandemics

A pandemic occurs when an infectious disease spreads across a large area. Many people become infected, and the rate of exposure and contamination escalates. The most commonly discussed, and publicized, is widespread incidence of influenza. Many governments and organizations have developed preparedness plans outlining physician responsibilities, priority-setting and prevention measures.

CMA policies

Caring in a crisis: The ethical obligations of physicians and society during a pandemic (2008; most recent)

The role of physicians in prevention and health promotion (2001; most recent)

Additional resources

Health Canada: Emergencies and disasters

Health Canada: Pandemic influenza preparedness

World Health Organization: Addressing ethical issues in pandemic influenza planning

Ethics and pandemics