IBM offers pandemic management service to government, business

'Tough decisions have to be made. There are huge benefits to proactive preparation.'
Written by ZDNet UK, Contributor

As proof that even tech journalists can work in a 666 angle to their stories, TechWeb notes that "it's just a coincidence" that IBM's new pandemic assessment service is being launched today. As government health agencies increasingly focus on the risk that bird flu will turn into a worldwide pandemic that could equal the influenza outbreak of 1918, IBM is translating its expertise in crisis management into a full-fledged offering.

“This offering is based on a lot of experience my team has had with business continuity and recovery services. My team has responded to over 70 international events,” including last year’s tsunami in Indonesia and Thailand and Hurricane Katrina, Woodworth said.

“With the potential risk of something such as the pandemic flu, that is another layer on top of natural disasters. This could have a significant impact on human capital, the personnel to conduct daily business and getting supplies. There are many factors that come into play,” Woodworth said.

“What we learned over time [was] there are huge benefits of being proactive preparing for crisis events. The return is significant,” he added.

IGS plans separate offerings for small and midsize businesses, starting at $10,000, and enterprise/government customers, priced between $50,000 and $150,000. The enterprise solution includes a deep interview to identify trigger points within a company that would shut down operations because of an external impact.

“Tough decisions have to be made. Everyone needs to understand their roles and responsibilities. There should be a pandemic risk management team for executives, visitors and employees,” he said.

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