Does America know something about the real possibility of a zombie outbreak that we don’t?
The U.S. Department of Defense is using an animated online course about a zombie pandemic to teach military nurses about population health.
And there are actual Pentagon guidelines for a zombie outbreak as well. If you weren’t scared before, you should be now.
Military nurses studying for their doctorate at the Uniformed Services University of the Healthcare Sciences (USU) have to take a course on population health, and because many of the students are deployed around the world, the course has to be available online.
But it’s not all reading and the occasional PowerPoint, the course features an animated storyline revolving around a zombie outbreak in Washington, DC, RT reports.
Developed by Dr. Catherine Ling, the assistant professor and family nurse practitioner says she uses the ‘narrative device of a zombie pandemic in animations and assignment to help engage students in content’ – students have to apply the theories and models of public health that they learned in the course to the case of the zombie apocalypse.
But is it a simple explanation of student engagement, or do they know something we don’t?
The zombie story ‘keeps the material interesting,’ and the theme helps the lessons be more cohesive, Ling claimed.
The zombie narrative also makes it understandably easier to remember the material, so it can be later applied in a real-life health emergency such as outbreaks of Ebola, Zika or swine flu.
Students are assigned to a fictional – at least we hope so – division of the Defense Department, called HHIT, and have to deal with the zombie apocalypse by administering vaccines, enacting quarantines, and obtaining international resources while adhering to actual Pentagon guidelines, Ling explained in a statement about the course.
The Pentagon even released a training document imagining the military’s response to a zombie apocalypse in May 2014, RT reports.
The scenario, titled CONOP 8888, was used by U.S. Strategic Command as a teaching tool, with STRATCOM explaining that it ‘elected to use a completely impossible scenario that could never be mistaken as a real plan’ – or so they say.
Get your doomsday packs ready, people.
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE