august 2019

Updates

When Disaster Strikes, a Search Website for First Responders Will Save Lives

Engineers at the University of California, Riverside are working on a tool that searches real-time text, photo, and video from social media and surveillance cameras alongside data from sensors, like fire detectors and security alarms. In addition to locating and analyzing information, the new tool will also collect it to constantly update databases. With a more integrated and holistic view of the situation, first responders can better allocate their resources.

Reports

Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency Strategic Intent

Meeting their constitutional duties to provide for the common defense, the U.S. Congress and the Administration established the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) to lead the national effort to protect our critical infrastructure. This document is the keystone of this new agency.

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Updates

Expanding Your Partnerships to Enhance Medical Surge: Seven Ways to Engage Outpatient Care Settings

Outpatient care settings – including federally qualified health centers, rural health clinics, urgent care centers, home health and hospice agencies, and primary care provider practices – have a wide range of capabilities that could be used to save lives in an emergency. Medical surge preparedness in outpatient settings has important implications for healthcare system preparedness and healthcare coalitions.

Preparedness

Emergency Animal Sheltering Options

by Richard Green & Timothy Perciful -

When there is a need for sheltering animals, there are several options – each comes with advantages and disadvantages. Conditions, agency policies, experiences, resources, or timing typically drive the decision as to what type of shelter is used. Regardless of the type of shelter utilized, the primary goal is to provide quality daily care until animals are reunited with their families or rehomed to new families.

Preparedness

A “Pracademic” Approach to Homeland Security

by Terry Hastings & Eric Stern -

It is important for academics and practitioners to collaborate and learn from each other. Academic research can help to address real-world challenges, and practitioners are uniquely positioned to provide meaningful insight to help shape research agendas.

Updates

FirstNet Authority Releases Public Safety-Driven Roadmap for Future of Network

The First Responder Network Authority marked a significant milestone with release of a new Roadmap for the future of FirstNet, the nationwide public safety broadband network. The FirstNet Authority Roadmap builds on the organization’s nationwide engagement with public safety to gather feedback on the most important communications capabilities for first responder missions.

Updates

Hajj Health and Safety Boosted by New Health Early Warning System

Authorities in Saudi Arabia are deploying a new health surveillance system to help keep people protected from communicable diseases during the annual hajj pilgrimage. For the first time, the Global Centre for Mass Gatherings Medicines of the Saudi Ministry of Health is using the Health Early Warning System (HEWS), which ensures the early detection of and timely response to health threats and emergencies related to mass gatherings.

Updates

NIST Awards $6.6 Million for Research to Help Structures Better Withstand Earthquakes, Wind and Fire

The U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is awarding more than $6.6 million to fund research into improving disaster resilience. Eleven organizations will receive grants to conduct research into how earthquakes, wind, and fire affect the built environment to inform building designs, codes, and standards to help those structures better withstand such hazards.

Updates

Crossing the Finish Line: Project BioShield Is Transforming the Nation’s Health Security With Cutting-Edge Innovation, Sound Investments, and Strong Partnerships

As directed in the National Biodefense Strategy, the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) continues to enhance preparedness to ensure health security and save lives – by expanding the nation’s portfolio of medical countermeasures to address the remaining threats and to counter new and unknown threats. The United States is better prepared today because of sound investments in biodefense made using Project BioShield, strong partnerships, and a shared commitment to cutting-edge innovation.

Podcast

Podcast – Pandemic Influenza: Advice & Suggestions From an Expert

With the myriad of threats that communities prepare for, influenza pandemic is consistently at the top of the priority list. In recent years, strains such as H7N9 and H1N1 have caused concern among health officials. It is no mystery why, considering the 1918 influenza pandemic – which infected over 500 million individuals around the world and caused tens of millions of deaths. Domestic Preparedness Advisor Andrew Roszak recently had the opportunity to sit down with one of the world’s leading pandemic experts, Dr. Lisa Koonin. Dr. Koonin recently retired from a 30-plus year career at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. She was one of the leads for pandemic influenza preparedness and response efforts.

In this podcast, Dr. Koonin reflects back on her years of service as a health official, discusses the importance of preparing for pandemic influenza, offers tips and suggestions on how organizations can begin thinking about preparing for pandemics, and offers advice to students seeking to start a career in public health. She also discusses the importance of partnerships and her new role as the founder of Health Preparedness Partners.

Healthcare

Pandemic Influenza: Advice & Suggestions From an Expert

by Andrew Roszak -

With the myriad of threats that communities prepare for, influenza pandemic is consistently at the top of the priority list. In recent years, strains such as H7N9 and H1N1 have caused concern among health officials. It is no mystery why, considering the 1918 influenza pandemic – which infected over 500 million individuals around the world and caused tens of millions of deaths. Domestic Preparedness Advisor Andrew Roszak recently had the opportunity to sit down with one of the world’s leading pandemic experts, Dr. Lisa Koonin. Dr. Koonin recently retired from a 30-plus year career at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. She was one of the leads for pandemic influenza preparedness and response efforts.

Updates

FLIR Celebrates Final DR-SKO Delivery to U.S. Army

FLIR commemorates the last delivery of Dismounted Reconnaissance Sets, Kits, and Outfits (DR-SKO) Systems to the U.S. Army’s Joint Program Executive Office for Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear Defense. The CBRN DR-SKO system is a set of mission-specific kits that characterize and provide full spectrum CBRN dismounted reconnaissance capability utilized by the U.S. military Joint Services.

Reports

Planning Considerations: Evacuation and Shelter-in-Place - Guidance for State, Local, Tribal and Territorial Partners

Evacuation and shelter-in-place protective actions are prompted by a variety of threats and hazards. Incident-specific circumstances drive the relevant protective actions based on a community’s demographics, infrastructure, resources, authorities, and decision-making process. Determining that an evacuation needs to take place is not an all-or-nothing approach. Lessons learned from disasters, such as hurricanes Katrina, Harvey, Irma, and Maria, highlight the value of enacting a zone-phased approach to evacuation and shelter-in-place, enabling jurisdictions to move as few people as necessary. Sheltering-in-place populations that are not directly in harm’s way, rather than having them evacuate, helps jurisdictions reduce costs, resource requirements, and the negative impacts of evacuations, while promoting improved response and quicker re-entry and recovery.

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Updates

DHS Announces Grant Allocations for Fiscal Year 2019 Preparedness Grants

As part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) ongoing efforts to support state, local, tribal, and territorial partners, Acting Secretary Kevin K. McAleenan announced final allocations of $350 million for six Fiscal Year 2019 DHS competitive preparedness grant programs.

Updates

Building a Better Pipeline of Candidate Products for Project BioShield

Over the last 15 years, BARDA has leveraged unique partnerships, funding, strong technical expertise, and interagency coordination to strengthen the medical countermeasure pipeline so products reach late-stage development support and, ultimately, become available to protect Americans and save lives during a national disaster.

Updates

The ADCIRC Prediction System

A suite of tools used by the United States Coast Guard and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, better known as the ADCIRC Prediction System (APS), played an integral role in accurately predicting the storm surges, flooding, wind and wave interactions, and speed of tides and currents associated with both Hurricane Florence and Michael.

Resilience

Predictable Surge: Improving Public-Private Collaboration

by Eric J. McNulty & John Campbell -

Public-private collaboration in disaster preparedness and response is currently sub-optimal in its organization and operational performance. This may be due to the perception of government entities that all collaboration must be formal in nature. As a consequence, small, medium, and even large private organizations may be reluctant to become involved in preparedness planning. However, reality suggests that organizations without existing contracts or partnerships are willing to participate in response efforts. This tension effectively limits the ability to anticipate the contributions that will come from entities outside of formal partnerships. “Predictable surge” is a new framework through which public and private entities, particularly at the state and local levels, may better work together to build preparedness and foster community resilience.

Reports

2019 National Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment (THIRA): Overview and Methodology

The 2019 National Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment (THIRA): Overview and Methodology provides an in-depth description of the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) approach to completing a national-level risk assessment. The intended audience is emergency management officials engaged in risk assessment at the community and federal levels, as well as other practitioners in the private sector or academia.

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Updates

First Medical Product Cleared in U.S. for Use on Certain Injuries Caused by Sulfur Mustard

The U.S. government reached a milestone in its long-standing efforts to defend the country against potential use of chemical weapons: the first U.S. Food and Drug Administration clearance of a product to manage certain blister injuries caused by sulfur mustard, commonly known as mustard gas.

Reports

Mental Health Issues and Conditions in Children and Youth Exposed to Human-Caused Disasters

This bulletin focuses on mental health and substance use issues and conditions in children and youth after human-caused disasters, such as oil spills, radiation disasters, public health emergencies, incidents of mass violence, and terrorism. 

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Updates

The United States Announces More Than $38 Million in Additional Assistance to Contain the Ebola Outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo

The United States, through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) is providing more than $38 million in additional assistance to help end the ongoing Ebola outbreak in the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), including $15 million in new funding to the World Health Organization.