Objectives: During the 2009 influenza A (H1N1) pandemic, Argentina's Hospital Nacional Profesor Alejandro Posadas, a referral center in the capital province of Buenos Aires, treated a large urban patient population. Beginning in April, after severe influenza had been reported in North America but before any suspected cases of H1N1 had been reported in Argentina, the authors formed a pandemic planning committee to direct our hospital's response. An important strategy of the management team was to create a single daily monitoring tool that could integrate multiple information sources. We describe our pandemic planning strategy so that it may serve as a template for other hospitals.
Methods: We describe our integrated data management system and the indicators it measured. We also describe the iterative process used to develop these tools and the current versions we use in surveillance for possible new waves of pandemic influenza.
Results: We present 3 examples of strategic decision making applied to data from our integrated information system. Daily pandemic surveillance data motivated the planning committee to reallocate hospital resources to care for patients during the peak pandemic period.
Conclusions: This report illustrates the importance of pandemic planning and advanced integrated information tools for management of a health care facility during a pandemic.
(Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2010;4:207-212)