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he AAP and the University of Illinois at Chicago Library of the Health Sciences have received support from the US Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Library of Medicine to implement a Disaster Outreach and Collaboration for Kids Project. The purpose of the project is to encourage community pediatricians, public librarians, and health science librarians to partner and improve preparedness and response efforts for children. A project advisory committee has been formed to guide project implementation.

Goals and Objectives
The goal is to enhance pediatric partnerships and promote disaster preparedness. It is anticipated that this project will result in an increase in the number of pediatrician and librarian partnerships as well as enhanced information sharing.

Objectives are to:
  • Identify and disseminate collaborative strategies for pediatricians and librarians to use in improving awareness of children's unique needs in disaster preparedness and response.
  • Promote cross-training and mutual awareness of disaster roles and health information needs.
  • Enhance availability of and access to disaster health-related documents.
Collaborative Strategies
  • Pediatricians can help librarians respond to health questions from consumers.
  • Pediatricians could educate librarians on disaster or health topics of interest.
  • Librarians could educate pediatricians about information dissemination.
  • Librarians could share information about the health questions they receive.
  • Partners could develop a funding proposal for a community project.
  • Partnership could focus on community response strategies for a certain type of disaster (flood recovery, infectious disease outbreak, tornado response).
  • Partnership could center on a specific topic (coping after a disaster, family reunification, influenza, personal preparedness).
  • Librarian/pediatrician partners could discuss where they seek disaster-related information and/or how to create an information portal (or Web page).
  • Partnership could use social media to facilitate information sharing. The pediatrician or staff could direct clients to a Facebook page. Postings could describe how families can access health services after a disaster. The librarian could help by monitoring postings and respond to requests for information.
  • Pediatricians and librarians can work together after a disaster to position facilities such as libraries as havens for community members seeking a meeting place, facility with cool air or heat, connectivity, and information.
  • Librarians can learn how to support Emergency Medical Services by observing 911 emergency dispatchers or riding along on an ambulance or other emergency response vehicle. See Adventures of an Ambulance Riding Librarian.

Resources

The AAP is seeking pediatricians who are either experienced with or are interested in partnering with librarians. For more information, e-mail DisasterReady@aap.org.

The AAP Disaster Outreach and Collaboration for Kids project is funded in part by the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, US Department of Health and Human Services.
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