226822 From theory to practice: Engaging and planning for racially and ethnically diverse communities in emergency preparedness

Monday, November 8, 2010

Nadia J. Siddiqui, MPH , Center for Health Equality, School of Public Health, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA
Dennis P. Andrulis, PhD, MPH , Texas Health Institute, Austin, TX
Jonathan Purtle, MPH, MSc , Department of Health Management & Policy, Drexel University School of Public Health, Philadelphia, PA
Time and time again, racial/ethnic minorities are disproportionately affected by public health emergencies. While Hurricane Katrina prompted attention to this issue, pervasive disparities in mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery remain. This was evident, yet again, following the 2009 H1N1 Pandemic as racial/ethnic minorities were more likely to contract the disease and be hospitalized. Since 2007, we have received continuing support from USDHHS Office of Minority Health to develop a set of consensus-based priorities and actions for engaging and incorporating racial/ethnic minorities in emergency preparedness. To this end, we convened a national panel of experts representing public/private federal, state, local and community-based organizations to develop a consensus statement, guiding principles and actionable strategies. Combined with national and peer-review literature and reports, this work is culminating in a first-of-a-kind broadly applicable toolkit (scheduled for release in Summer 2010) intended to complement existing guidance in the field on preparedness planning for vulnerable populations, but adding specific strategies grounded in the socioeconomic and cultural realities of racial/ethnic communities. This presentation will introduce this unique toolkit intended for public health and emergency management organizations and offer practical actions for engaging minority communities in establishing partnerships and trust, drills and exercises, personal education programs, community needs assessments, tailoring risk communication, program evaluation and other preparedness priorities. We will discuss issues commonly faced by planning organizations, such as limited resources, funds and staffing, roles/responsibilities, and interagency collaboration. Finally, we will highlight programs that have shown promise in planning for and advancing equity in preparedness for racial/ethnic minorities.

Learning Areas:
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Diversity and culture
Program planning
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe disparities commonly faced by racial/ethnic minorities across mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery. 2. Identify key program and policy priorities for eliminating these disparities and advancing the preparedness of minority communities. 3. Demonstrate the organizational ability to adapt principles and strategies identified in the toolkit to engage racial/ethnic minorities in preparedness planning and action.

Keywords: Minorities, Community Planning

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I manage and am senior analyst on our Center's work on emergency preparedness for racially and ethnically diverse communities.
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.