Attachment B HAN Alert Priority Definitions Examples and Procedures

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Virginia Health Alert Network
(HAN) Alert Priority Definitions,
Examples and Procedures
Attachment B to HAN Standard
Operating Guidelines
Document Version: 1.0
Revision Date: October 30, 2007
Copyright © 2007 by Global Secure Systems Corp.
All Rights Reserved
5112 Arnold Ave., Bldg 21
McClellan, CA 95652
Alert Priority Definitions
The Virginia Department of Health, Office of Emergency Preparedness and Response (EP&R), has
established the following high level definitions of alert urgency levels. These should be understood by
all alert recipients while defining their personal alert profiles. In addition, these definitions should be
used as a guide when alerts are generated.

Low Level (E-mail Alert Only)
o Routine
o Does not necessarily require confirmation
o Important but not urgent
o Informational but not an emergency
o Example: Update on Avian influenza in China or Singapore
o No action required

Medium Level (E-mail Alert with 30 minute telephone delay)
o Increased Readiness
o Important
o Regarding a moderate threat to the public health or safety
o Example: Avian Influenza has been seen in North America; your attendance is required
at a meeting at 2pm tomorrow to discuss
o Usually requires a response or action
o Timeframe: within 24 – 72 hours

High Level (no telephone delay)
o Response
o Important and Urgent
o Regarding a serious threat to the public health or safety
o Example: Avian Influenza in our area, emergency meeting of key leadership in 3 hours.
o Response and Action Required
o Timeframe: Immediate to 24 hours
Alert Guidelines
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5.
Alerts are to be used only for the purpose of public health and safety.
Duration of at least 1 day, or whatever is deemed necessary
Try not to use all caps in your alert subject line or text
Use abbreviations as little as possible
Put all essential information in the first 100 characters (including subject line), and all important
info in the first 200 characters.
6. If a lot of information must be transmitted, post a document on HAN in addition to your alert.
7. Toward the end of the alert, specify that it was sent through HAN, who it was sent from and what
priority the alert was, and give a person to contact.
Example Low Level Alert
Avian Flu Detected in Indonesia
This is not a test. An outbreak of avian flu has been detected among an Indonesian family on
Sumatra island. At least seven family members are believed to have been infected with the
H5N1 avian flu virus. The World Health Organization said limited human-to-human
transmission cannot be ruled out and has sent a team to the area. No human cases of avian flu
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© 2007 Global Secure Systems Corp.
SWAN ALERT PRIORITY DEFINITIONS, EXAMPLES AND PROCEDURES
have been detected in Virginia at this time. No action regarding this information is necessary.
For more information, log onto HAN. This was a low priority alert sent by the Office of
Emergency Preparedness and Response. As always, please confirm the receipt of this alert. If
you are unable to confirm the receipt of this alert or have any problems receiving this message,
please follow-up with a help request to your local administrator or please send an email to
[email protected]
Example Medium Level Alert
Mandatory Meeting Regarding Avian Flu Detection in North America
This is not a test. An outbreak of avian flu has been detected in a human living in Canada. A
meeting to discuss this incident has been called for tomorrow at 9:00 AM Eastern in the
Emergency Communications Center in the Madison Building. Your attendance is required.
This was a medium priority alert sent by the Office of Emergency Preparedness and Response.
As always, please confirm the receipt of this alert. If you are unable to confirm the receipt of this
alert or have any problems receiving this message, please follow-up with a help request to your
local administrator or please send an email to [email protected]
Example High Level Alert
Emergency Meeting Regarding Avian Flu Outbreak in Region
This is not a test. An outbreak of avian flu has been detected in Region II. A source has leaked
this information to the media. An emergency meeting of key leadership will be held in two
hours at 9:00 PM tonight in the Emergency Communications Center in the Madison Building.
Your attendance is required. This was a high priority alert sent by the Office of Emergency
Preparedness and Response. As always, please confirm the receipt of this alert. If you are unable
to confirm the receipt of this alert or have any problems receiving this message, please follow-up
with a help request to your local administrator or please send an email to
[email protected]
Alert Follow Up
After launching a test alert message, as a sender you should monitor confirmation from the
“View my sent alerts” screen to ensure that there were no technical difficulties.
○ Export the CSV file of contact information into Excel and save it.
○ Notate any inappropriate contact devices. For Example, phone devices under
Low Priority, blank contact fields, duplicate entries, or “portal only” profiles.
○ Investigate/Respond to all mail failures notifications.
○ Contact individuals with faulty profile information.
○ Resend alert to unconfirmed users after approximately 24 hours OR contact
unconfirmed users and their HAN administrators via email.
© 2007 Global Secure Systems Corp.
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