Dr. Michael Osterholm is director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy (CIDRAP), director of the NIH-supported Center of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance within CIDRAP, a professor in the Division of Environmental Health Sciences, School of Public Health, and an adjunct professor a the University of Minnesota medical school. He is also a member of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academy of Sciences. In June 2005 Dr. Osterholm was appointed by Michael Leavitt, Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), to the newly established National Science Advisory Board on Biosecurity. He has authored the New York Times best-selling book, “Living Terrors: What America Needs to Know to Survive the Coming Bioterrorist Catastrophe.”
Dr. Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy, discusses the risk of an influenza pandemic in America and across the world. An international leader on the critical concern regarding preparedness for a flu pandemic, Osterholm tells the crowd that the question is not “if,” but “when” the next flu pandemic will strike. He claims that the world is currently at a greater risk of facing a flu pandemic than it has been in many years. Globalization and the ease of international trade make the transfer of disease in the world today much easier, Osterholm says. Referring to the recent avian flu scare in Asia, Osterholm frames his discussion around what can be done to prepare for the next flu pandemic.