183024 Vulnerable populations: Identification and meeting their needs

Tuesday, October 28, 2008: 2:30 PM

Rhonda White, MBA , Office of Public Health Preparedness, Florida Department of Health, Tallahassee, FL
Thomas Belcuore, MS , Alachua County Health Department, Florida Department of Health, Gainesville, FL
Susan Bulecza, RN, MSN, CNS-BC , Office Of Public Health Preparedness, Florida Department of Health, Tallahassee, FL
One of the major difficulties in preparing for and responding to civilian issues after an event, natural or manmade is having a true picture of the potential size of the vulnerable populations. This can be further complicated due to a number of factors including urban density, location of critical health facilities to the population's location, bedroom communities overlapping multiple response jurisdictions either county or state, and rural population disbursement. While many jurisdictions attempt to register their vulnerable populations several barrier exist in its use. These barriers include a potential lack of a standardized definition for vulnerable populations, citizen reticence to register for fear of information being misused or inappropriately shared, and information not being kept current. In Florida, we have developed a methodology that takes a systematic approach to identifying and assessing vulnerable populations. This approach has been categorized into three need areas—people (what are the issues and needs), healthcare system (what is needed to support those at risk), and responder/provider (who is needed, how many, and what do they need to know). This methodology incorporates a standardized set of analysis questions, utilization of standard data sets, and GIS mapping. Additionally, this methodology has been operationalized into the basis of a tactical response plan. We will show the use of vulnerable population data as it pertains to Florida residents, infrastructure issues related to these populations, and the structure for a tactical plan.

Learning Objectives:
Describe an analysis methodology for identifying vulnerable population for use in preparedness planning. Identify examples of data use and relevance to emergency response. Develop a tactical response plan that addresses the issues of those at risk.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Have been the co-developer of this model with Rhonda White and have presented on this topic at state and local meetings.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.