Local nonprofit helps inform public about swine flu

In response to the recent outbreak of Swine Flu in San Diego County, 211 San Diego has activated its call center for the public to call for non-emergency information related to swine influenza in the region.

A public health emergency was declared on Sunday, April 26, by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The San Diego County Office of Emergency Services has activated 211, and has asked the public to dial 2-1-1 to speak with live specialists for information on the swine flu situation.

211 San Diego offers 24/7, free community, health and disaster information. 211 works in partnership with the County of San Diego’s Office of Emergency Services (OES) to provide the public with up-to-the-minute information when called upon by OES to distribute urgent information to the public through its online disaster database, ReliefPoint, supported by Qualcomm Incorporated, Pangea Foundation, and the County of San Diego at the recommendation of Supervisor Greg Cox.

Because this database is web-based, 211 San Diego will be sharing the system with 211s nationwide to better collect and report national information around this situation.

“211 was here to answer the call during Firestorm 2007,” says the Chief Executive Officer, John Ohanian. “We are committed to public health and safety in our region, and to providing the public with a single place they can go to for accurate information 24/7 for their personal and public disasters.”

During a disaster or public crisis, 211 partners with the County of San Diego’s Office of Emergency Services to be the central place for non-emergency disaster information during a disaster. During Firestorm 2007, 211 San Diego helped more than 120,000 residents connect to valuable resources like road closures, shelters, evacuations, and recovery assistance.

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