Unlike regional events such as hurricanes, earthquakes, or terrorist attacks, a pandemic is a recurring global event with global implications. Thus, outbreaks of influenza A (H1N1), for example, have underscored the critical importance of effective pandemic planning and response to minimize the potential for human morbidity and mortality, reduce social and economic disruptions, and mitigate against organizational risk exposures.

Marsh helps organizations like yours address their needs in this area. Tailored solutions are described below. For more information on all our offerings on this topic plus reports, articles and press releases, visit our Pandemic homepage.


Unlike regional events such as hurricanes, earthquakes, or terrorist attacks, a pandemic is a recurring global event with global implications. Thus, outbreaks of influenza A (H1N1) and MERS-CoV, for example, have underscored the critical importance of effective pandemic planning and response to minimize the potential for human morbidity and mortality, reduce social and economic disruptions, and mitigate against organizational risk exposures.

Preparing for a Pandemic

Organizations are well advised to review their ability to respond to potential disruptions to their operations and protect the well-being of employees — whether caused by pandemic or other unforeseen events. Following are some of the many issues and actions that should be considered before a pandemic begins:

  • Treat a pandemic as a truly catastrophic event as opposed to a "manageable disruption."
  • Establish pandemic planning committees, supported by real budgets.
  • Prioritize critical products and services and prepare to protect those, even at the expense of other important elements of a business model.
  • Estimate and plan for post-pandemic changes, including shifts in demand patterns, in the availability and morale of staff, and in infrastructure, both locally and to vendors.

In the immediate term of any pandemic outbreak, Marsh recommends that organizations:   

  • Assess existing pandemic risk management plans and how the organization has performed to date in relation to past pandemic and epidemic outbreaks.
  • Ensure that corporate preparedness plans and their business continuity management (BCM) components include pandemic scenarios and exercise these plans where possible.
  • Review company policies on travel, hygiene, and anti-viral medications and health- care support to ensure they are consistent with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, World Health Organization, and similar organizations.
  • In highly populated areas, ensure that corporate preparedness and BCM plans allow for staff to work at home where appropriate.
  • Consider if there are any vital processes that must be maintained in a pandemic, such as call centers, health services, and services vital to those most vulnerable.
  • Decide what other core functions need to be kept running if the organization becomes short staffed.

The information in this center will be updated on a regular basis from subject matter experts from Marsh and other Marsh & McLennan Companies.

If you have any questions or concerns about pandemic preparedness, please do not hesitate to contact us. You should also seek guidance from health agencies and governmental entities for the most current information about a pandemic in your locality.

Pandemic Preparedness and Response
Views: 47711  |  Comments: 0  |  Category: Solutions  |  Published: 14-Jun-2013
Pandemic Preparedness and Response
These new outbreaks present governments and health officials with unique challenges.  Read More >>
Rapid Pandemic Preparedness Assessment
Views: 22784  |  Comments: 0  |  Category: Solutions  |  Published: 04-Jun-2013
Rapid Pandemic Preparedness Assessment
Unlike regional events such as hurricanes, earthquakes, or terrorist attacks, a pandemic is a recurring global event with global implications.  Read More >>
Pandemic Insurance Program Options
Views: 21674  |  Comments: 0  |  Category: Solutions  |  Published: 15-Sep-2009
Pandemic Insurance Program Options
Marsh's Property Specialized Risk Group, a division of the Property Practice, has produced an update to the document, "Pandemic Insurance Program Options," a brief one-page documen  Read More >>