Public Health Emergency Preparedness at the Local Level: Results of a National Survey

Authors

  • Elena Savoia,

    1. Center for Public Health Preparedness, Harvard School of Public Health, 677 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115
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    • Address correspondence to Elena Savoia, M.D., M.P.H., Center for Public Health Preparedness, Harvard School of Public Health, 677 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115; e-mail: esavoia@hsph.harvard.edu. Angie Mae Rodday, M.Sc., is with the Department of Biostatistics, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA. Michael A. Stoto, Ph.D., is with Georgetown University School of Nursing & Health Studies, Washington, DC.

  • Angie Mae Rodday,

    1. Department of Biostatistics, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA
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  • Michael A. Stoto

    1. Georgetown University School of Nursing & Health Studies, Washington, DC.
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Abstract

Objective. To study the relationship between elements of public health infrastructure and local public health emergency preparedness (PHEP).

Data Sources/Study Setting. National Association of County and City Health Officials 2005 National Profile of Local Health Departments (LHDs).

Study Design. Cross-sectional.

Principal Findings. LHDs serving larger populations are more likely to have staff, capacities, and activities in place for an emergency. Adjusting for population size, the presence of a local board of health and the LHDs' experience in organizing PHEP coalitions were associated with better outcomes.

Conclusions. The results of this study suggest that more research should be conducted to investigate the benefit of merging small health departments into coalitions to overcome the inverse relationship between preparedness and population size of the jurisdiction served by the LHD.

Ancillary