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From CDC to ABC: H7N9 from Hong Kong

Categories: Disease Investigation, Disease Outbreak, General, Preparedness, Prevention/Vaccination, Response

Taking on the role of interim CDC director can be an intimidating task, but an impending pandemic can make the position exponentially more daunting. This is the situation Dr. Richard Besser faced in 2009 when he stepped into his new job. But Besser took the task head on and guided the country’s premier health agency through the H1N1 outbreak with skill and confidence. Through this experience Besser saw first hand how important communication is to building the publics’ trust and improving health behaviors.

Public Health: Are We Too Slow?

Categories: Disease Investigation, Disease Outbreak, Foodborne, General, Response

 Meat thermometer and raw chicken breast

One of the many roles of public health is to protect consumers from threats like foodborne outbreaks. Much of this hinges on quickly getting out clear messages to the public that provide simple steps to help stem the spread of disease. This is something public health professionals have been doing for over a hundred years, but a recent outbreak of Salmonella Heidelberg got us wondering, “Are we doing enough to keep the public safe? Are we too slow? And, How can we improve?”

Do 1 Thing: Food

Categories: Do 1 Thing, General, Preparedness

By Cate Shockey

This blog is part of a series, covering a preparedness topic each month from the Do 1 Thing Program.  Join us this month as we tackle “food.”

A delicious topic – food!  As a super picky eater with minimal cooking skills, a prepackaged stockpile is right up my alley.  

The Do 1 Thing task of the month is to work on your emergency food supply.  CDC encourages storing enough food for at least three days if you have to evacuate, and a two week supply for your home.

Plague Inc.

Categories: Disease Investigation, Disease Outbreak, General

Plague Inc

James Vaughan, founder of Ndemic Creations, spoke to CDC staff on March 20, 2013 about his new mobile app, Plague Inc.  Within the game, players select a pathogen and strategize how to evolve symptoms, transmit the disease, and counter actions taken by world governments and scientists. With a successful disease, players can watch as governments fall and humanity is wiped out.

Emergency Kit Cook-Off: A Dash of Planning… Pinch of Preparedness… a World of Difference

Categories: General, Preparedness

emergency kit cookoff

By: Ethan M. Riley

Staff meetings for the Arizona Division of Emergency Management (ADEM) Public Information Office (PIO) are pretty run of the mill. We review the past week’s accomplishments, divvy up assignments for the coming week and forecast projects for the weeks ahead. We talk a lot of “shop,” but also make time to dish on our favorite subject …lunch. So it did not come as a great surprise to those who know me or my colleagues that the ADEM PIO office would start a “Whole Community” campaign called the Emergency Kit Cook-Off.

Solving a Communication Gap with Partners in Preparedness

Categories: General, Natural Disasters, Preparedness

Partners in Preparedness logoBy Victoria Harp   

When asked, leaders in communities everywhere will say that communication is by far the biggest problem during an emergency. Communication is such a broad term that it does not pinpoint the problem. Is it actual communication systems like phone lines and cell towers? Is it the communication you receive or try to obtain in an emergency? Is it communication to the people you are responsible for? Is it communication from the people you are responsible for? The question becomes how do we go about addressing these issues?  Start small and focus on one solution to one communication problem.  

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