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Disaster preparedness focus of April 30 event

April 15, 2014
by Lois A. Bowers, Senior Editor
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The federal government is planning its inaugural PrepareAthon! National Day of Action for April 30 in an effort to help healthcare professionals and others plan their individual, family and facility responses to natural disasters such as tornadoes, floods, hurricanes and wildfires.

“In 2012, natural disasters caused more than 450 weather-related fatalities and nearly 2,600 injuries,” notes Nicole Lurie, MD, assistant secretary for preparedness and response in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). “Every disaster holds the potential to impact health, but most people are still unprepared for emergencies.”

The PrepareAthon includes tips, points for discussion and drills that can be used by facilities, and the HHS Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology has developed a video game and a video to help healthcare providers with disaster preparedness. Another feature of the effort is discussion groups via which workplaces, faith-based organizations, those concerned with access and functional needs, medical providers and others can share best practices, develop preparedness plans and offer other assistance to one another.

For more information or to register to participate in this year’s event, visit

For more information on emergency preparedness, see this Long-Term Living article:

Disaster primer: When Mother Nature strikes