Teaching Emergency Preparedness to Restricted-Budget Families


Shannon E. Mack, 1621 SE Courtney Road, Milwaukie, OR 97222. E-mail: shannon_e_mack@hotmail.com


ABSTRACT Objectives: To fulfill the health teaching and promotion responsibilities of public health nurses, a teaching intervention was devised to prepare low-income, low-resource families to survive a worst-case disaster scenario. The purpose of this study is to introduce that plan.

Design: Teaching sessions were held to increase awareness about disaster preparedness and to provide the resources necessary for preparing disaster kits on a restricted budget.

Sample: This project focused on families enrolled at the Children's Relief Nursery in Portland, Oregon's St. Johns District.

Measurements: Posttest assessments and client follow-up at 3, 6, and 12 months were used to assess the effectiveness of the curriculum and follow-through on kit preparation.

Results: A replicable teaching tool was successfully developed, and the interest and commitment of community partners dedicated to assisting restricted-budget families was secured.

Conclusions: States' disaster plans hinge on individuals' implementation of their own survival plans, and it is vital that these individuals be made aware of their responsibility. It is truly a matter of life and death that families possess the skills, knowledge, and resources to carry out a disaster survival plan successfully, and it is the ethical responsibility of the public health nurse to intervene.