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Public Engagement Pilot Project on Pandemic Influenza (PEPPPI)

The federal government has never been known for seeking citizen input on major public policy decisions. But that’s exactly what happened recently when the Centers for Disease Control teamed with several partners to produce the Public Engagement Pilot Project on Pandemic Influenza, or PEPPPI.

In one of the most exemplary recent US government efforts to engage the public around an urgent issue, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) convened a series of public consultations on pandemic flu in the last quarter of 2005. The purpose of the Public Engagement Pilot Project on Pandemic Influenza (PEPPPI) was to inform decision-makers about the public’s priorities for the use of pandemic influenza vaccine during a period of anticipated shortage. This information was intended to lead to a sounder, more supportable decision and to demonstrate that citizens can be productively engaged in informing vaccine related policy decisions thereby leading to more public engagement in the future.

According to one of the project’s sponsors, “To conduct this public consultation, the sponsors engaged stakeholders from various organizations with an interest in pandemic influenza (the National Stakeholder Group), and individual citizens-at-large from the four principal regions of the United States, including Georgia (South), Massachusetts (North East), Nebraska (Midwest), and Oregon (West).”

According to Patty Dineen of the National Issues Forums Institute, “This is the best public engagement project and report that I have seen.  I really think that what you’ve done is groundbreaking and should be required reading for all of us who are involved in – or care about – public engagement.”

The Department of Health and Human Services’ pandemic flu plan included a section that describes the advisory committee recommendations that provide guidance for planning purposes and to form the basis for further discussion of how to equitably allocate medical countermeasures that will be in short supply early in an influenza pandemic.

Everyday Democracy has a report of the consultation on their website at www.everyday-democracy.org//en/Article.393.aspx

The link below opens the 2007 report entitled “Public Engagement Project on Community Control Measures for Pandemic Influenza Findings and Recommendations from Citizen and Stakeholder Deliberation Days.”


And this link opens the 98-page 2005 report titled “Citizen Voices on Pandemic Flu Choices: A Report of the Public Engagement Pilot Project on Pandemic Influenza”


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