Every winter, the United States suffers a seasonal flu that kills approximately 36,000 people and hospitalizes more than 200,000. But as terrible as those statistics are, health experts warn of a far more lethal kind of flu that could occur by mid-century -- a pandemic flu that could kill more than half a million Americans, hospitalize more than two million and cost our economy a staggering $70 billion to $160 billion in lost productivity and direct medical expenses.

During 2006 and 2007, Pew invested in two projects to help ensure that our country is prepared for a flu pandemic or similar public health emergency: The Pandemic Preparedness Initiative and The Promising Practices project.

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