Online Program

What Did Hurricane Sandy Reveal about Public Health Competency and Capability?

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 : 11:10 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.

David M. Abramson, PhD MPH, National Center for Disaster Preparedness, Columbia University, New York, NY
In the thirteen years since “Y2K” and the twelve since 9/11, nearly ten billion dollars have been invested in domestic public health to be better prepared for complex emergencies and disasters. Each subsequent catastrophic event, from the anthrax mailings to Hurricane Katrina to the Boston bombings and to Hurricane Sandy, has stimulated considerable reflection and improvement activity. After Action Reports and Lessons Learned are generated. When Sandy struck the northeast coast last October, it proved a challenge to New York's public and private health systems, among the most sophisticated and robust in the nation. This presentation will consider how “competent” and “capable” these systems were in the face of a major storm.

Learning Areas:

Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health

Learning Objectives:
Describe the extent to which Superstorm Sandy challenged the competency and capabilities of local health departments in the greater metropolitan region surrounding New York City.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: As Deputy Director of Columbia University’s National Center for Disaster Preparedness and a Co-Investigator of our CDC-funded Preparedness and Emergency Response Learning Center, I have been very involved in developing and conducting research projects on public health roles in disasters, and in developing strategies for teaching about public health competencies and capabilities.
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.