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Emergencies can take many forms. From natural disasters such as flooding and ice storms, or naturally occurring or intentional communicable disease outbreaks such as pandemic influenza or bio-terrorism. These disasters can not only pose physical threats, but also have serious public health consequences. Since 2001, Kentucky's Department for Public Health (DPH) has received federal funds through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for public health emergency preparedness and planning.

Locally, a Public Health Preparedness Coordinator collaborates with emergency management, hospitals, American Red Cross, and other organizations to increase preparedness levels in the community. Plans have been developed, and are continually updated, to address both naturally occurring threats and bio-terrorism. Pike County Health Department and local and regional partners exercise preparedness plans regularly to practice these plans, and to revise them as needed so that the community is prepared in an actual emergency. These plans might include how to staff and supply shelters during a flood or ice storm or how to deliver life-saving medications after a bio-terrorist attack. Why wait? It is always better to be prepared in an emergency than to be without much needed supplies. What can you do to prepare?

Watch this video to learn how you can prepare!

Key steps to preparedness:

  • Learn what your emergencies are. Do you live in an area prone to flooding or power outages? Do you depend on electricity for respirators or other life-saving equipment?
  • Make a plan! Decide what supplies you need and where you will keep them. How will you evacuate, and if you and your family separate how you will all get back together? Don’t forget your pets!
  • Stock food water and other supplies. Be sure to include enough for 3 to 7 days for everyone in your family. Don’t forget your pets!
  • Practice your plan. Make sure everyone in your home knows the plan, and practice it regularly.

Preparedness starts with You!