The unique needs of children mandate specialized and appropriate planning for disasters. Establishing pediatric advisory councils or children’s preparedness coalitions where leaders decide together what actions are required to protect children in the event of a disaster is crucial. The AAP Pediatric Preparedness Resource Kit offers guidance on developing pediatric advisory councils or children preparedness coalitions. As experts in the health of children, it is imperative that pediatricians participate in such efforts and collaborate with local and state officials.
Many states and communities have developed coalitions to bring together diverse government agencies, nonprofit organizations, health care providers, and other groups or professionals. Pediatricians are encouraged to get involved in these efforts to initiate or enhance pediatric preparedness. Below are known disaster-related coalitions for you to connect with. If you want the contact information for a specific coalition, please e-mail DisasterReady@aap.org.
Arizona Healthcare Coalitions
The goal of this coalition is to facilitate collaboration among public health, health care, pre-hospital entities, and various community partners to prepare for, respond to, and recover from an emergency or disaster. The Arizona Healthcare Coalition is compromised of the Central, Northern, Southern, and Western Healthcare Coalitions.
Arizona Pediatric Disaster Coalition
The mission of Arizona Pediatric Disaster Coalition is to:
- Help health care facilities in Arizona prepare in advance so they are ready to respond effectively in times of disaster.
- Make available resources and capacities to assist pediatric patients and families.
- Prevent or reduce relocation burdens due to medical surge.
- Provide an efficient and scalable response through prior collaboration.
- Minimize recovery efforts through prior planning.
This coalition is pediatric specific, which differs from the Arizona Healthcare Coalitions.
California - Children in Disasters Working Group – Los Angeles County
The mission of the Los Angeles Children in Disasters Working Group is to build a disaster resilient community that ensures children’s health, well-being, and safety before, during, and after disasters. The purpose of the working group is to establish a sustained collaborative mechanism among public and private stakeholders in Los Angeles County to share policies and standards regarding:
- Children in emergencies,
- Best practices supporting child safety,
- Resources to support children with access and functional needs,
- Related training materials for educators, child care providers and others that ensure children’s needs are met before, during, and after emergencies and disasters.
The Working Group has developed a guide for child care providers in Los Angeles County, titled “Protecting Children During a Disaster” and has received funding from Southern California Edison to pilot the developed guide. Additional projects are currently under development.
California - KIDs (Kids in Disasters) Working Group Orange County
The goal of this working group is to engage public and private community, government and health care organizations, and individuals to promote coordinated efforts and partnerships to ensure that Orange County infants’ and children’s needs are met before, during, and after disasters.
California - Los Angeles County Healthcare Disaster Coalition
The Los Angeles County Healthcare Coalition is a network of health care organizations, government agencies, and providers working together to strengthen emergency preparedness, response and recovery. The Coalition works to ensure integration and coordination across the health care system so that adequate medical surge capacity and capability is available during a mass casualty and/or large scale event.
California Neonatal/Pediatric and Perinatal Disaster Preparedness Coalition
The purpose of this coalition is to support pediatric and neonatal local, regional, and statewide disaster preparedness and medical surge efforts. The coalition supports an electronic e-mail list to distribute resources and connect novice members with subject matter experts.
California – San Bernardino County Coalition
The mission of this coalition is to optimize the coordination of health care system emergency preparedness planning and response activities within the County of San Bernardino through sharing of information and best practices. The San Bernardino County Healthcare Preparedness Planning Partnership is a voluntary multidisciplinary, multi-agency coalition created to address issues and challenges that affect health care emergency preparedness, response and recovery. The coalition consists of 19 general acute care hospitals, 1 Level I Trauma Center, 1 Level II Trauma Center, 1 Children’s hospital, 1 County Regional Medical Center, and community hospitals of various sizes.
California - San Diego Health Care Disaster Council
The San Diego Health Care Disaster Council advises the County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency, Public Health Services, and the Division of Emergency Medical Services on the community’s health and medical disaster preparedness.
California - San Diego Pediatric Coalition
The goal of this coalition is to support the preparation for pediatric/neonatal surge and delivery of optimal pediatric services for all hospitals in the County of San Diego.
California – Southern California Coalition
The Children’s Hospital Los Angeles Pediatric Disaster Resource and Training Center provides training, resources and more to health care centers throughout Los Angeles County. The center brings together all efforts of pediatric disaster training to provide resources and training for the health care community.
Coyote Crisis Collaborative
The mission of the Coyote Crisis Collaborative is to provide tools, experience, education, and information to facilitate continuous improvement for the community. Primary stakeholders include health care, education, businesses, municipalities and other government (including the military), and access and functional needs organizations. Among its responsibilities is the management of the Arizona Pediatric Disaster Coalition and the National Pediatric Disaster Coalition Conference. The Collaborative has also produced a free video for schools across the nation on what to do in a shooting incident; entitled, Active Shooter Action Plan (or ASAP). The video is intended to spur discussions among teachers and others serving schools about disaster plan strategies.
Denver Health Care Coalition
The emergency preparedness department at Denver Public Health consists of a team of experts who specialize in all-hazards emergency preparedness. They work to identify, monitor and respond to public health emergencies that impact resident health and well-being.
Florida Children’s Preparedness Coalition
This coalition is a multi-agency and multi-organization coalition created to ensure the emergency preparedness and response needs of children are planned for and integrated across the state of Florida. This partnership aims to successfully address children’s needs when a disaster or emergency strikes. This group is also tasked with leveraging the many state, local, tribal and federal resources identified within Florida to serve children.
Illinois - Chicago Healthcare System Coalition for Preparedness and Response
The Chicago Healthcare System Coalition for Preparedness and Response (CHSCPR) is comprised of 35 hospitals (full care, specialty and Veterans Administration hospitals) and 125+ long-term care facilities in Chicago, along with a number of stakeholder and first responder medical agencies.
Together, the Chicago Department of Public Health Hospital Preparedness Program and the local health care coalition, CHSCPR, partner to provide leadership to address disaster planning, including health care system preparedness and recovery, medical surge, crisis standards of care, fatality management, and responder safety and health and volunteer management across the health care system in Chicago and the region. This improved planning and coordination leads to improved patient surge capacity and the enhancement of health care community preparedness in both real and planned events within the city.
Illinois EMSC Pediatric Disaster Workgroup
This workgroup is responsible for identifying best practices and developing resources to assist in assuring that the special needs of children are addressed during a disaster or terrorist event in Illinois.
This coalition enhances the capacity of the Kentucky Department for Public Health, local public health departments, and the health care system to prevent, prepare for, respond to and recover from the adverse health effects of public health emergencies and disasters.
The Maryland Pediatric Emergency Medical Advisory Committee advises the state Emergency Medical Services Board and State Emergency Medical Services Advisory Council on pediatric issues.
Missouri - Children and Youth in Disasters
The Children and Youth in Disasters subcommittee promotes and facilitates comprehensive interagency planning for the needs of children and youth in emergencies and disasters in Missouri. The vision of the subcommittee is to assure the needs of children are addressed in all emergency planning, preparedness, response and recovery efforts.
Mountain States Pediatric Disaster Coalition
In 2014, the Mountain States Pediatric Disaster Coalition was established to create a network of hospitals, health care providers, public health departments, and community groups to help provide regional pediatric surge capacity and ensure effective use of critical resources in the event of a large-scale disaster affecting children in the mountain states region. Current coalition activities include finalizing a coalition charter and the development of a regional pediatric facility database. Future efforts will focus on defining pediatric capabilities and regional disaster exercises. Coalition partners are from Montana, Wyoming, Idaho, Utah, and Colorado. Follow the coalition on Twitter @PedsDisaster.
New Hampshire - State Reunification Services Planning Coalition
The goal of this coalition is to:
- Improve the ability to conduct reunification services within the state during and immediately after a catastrophic disaster.
- Increase the capacity to conduct reunification services.
- Incorporate reunification services into State and local Emergency Operations Plans (EOP) Mass Care Annex.
- Include reunification services in EOP training and exercise plans.
The Coalition will aim to adapt the Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HSEM)/Department of Education (DOE) school reunification annex. A "decision tree" will be used to illustrate all possible agencies and organizations with resources for reunification services. The Coalition will also determine a process and ownership for cross-referencing reports of missing, injured, and deceased persons with information reported in reunification systems, evacuation tracking systems, registries, social media, and other information resources.
New York City Pediatric Disaster Coalition
This group was established to build a coalition of hospitals, public health, municipal services, and community groups to ensure effective use of critical assets during and after a large scale disaster affecting children in New York City.
The Ohio Emergency Medical Services for Children, housed within the Division of Emergency Medical Services at the Ohio Department of Public Safety, incorporates pediatric issues into all aspects of Emergency Medical Services in Ohio.
The Oregon Disaster Medical Team is an independent, non-profit organization of volunteer health care professionals from Oregon and Southwest Washington.
The Pennsylvania Emergency Medical Services for Children Advisory Committee offers a forum for issues that have potential impact on the emergency care and transport of all pediatric patients in the community.
Southeast Minnesota Disaster Health Coalition
The mission of this coalition is to build health care system resilience and capacity in southeastern Minnesota to better ensure delivery of care during disasters by providing resources and a communication platform for planning, response and recovery activities.
Southeastern Regional Pediatric Disaster Surge Network
The purpose of the Southeastern Regional Pediatric Disaster Surge Network is to improve the pediatric preparedness response strategies of public health, emergency response, and pediatric providers in the event of large-scale emergencies or disasters that overwhelm local or state pediatric resources. Coalition partners are from Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee. The Network functions with a memorandum of understanding signed by all participants and additional mutual aid agreements that exist among many of the participants.
The Heart of Texas Regional Advisory Council is committed to building an all-hazard disaster preparedness program for the region. Multiple programs and tools are utilized to enhance disaster preparedness.
Ventura County Health Care Coalition
The Ventura County Health Care Coalition (VCHCC) aims to support medical and health care entities to prepare for, respond to, mitigate, and recover from disasters by promoting integration, information sharing, and resource support in the Ventura County Operational Area and California Medical/Health Mutual Aid Region I.
Washington State Coalition
The goal of this coalition is to establish and promote a system of emergency medical and trauma care services. This system would provide timely and appropriate delivery of emergency medical treatment for people with acute illness and traumatic injury, and allow for recognition of the changing methods and environment for providing optimal emergency care throughout Washington.
Additional Coalitions or Networks
If you are aware of an additional coalition or network, please e-mail DisasterReady@aap.org. Please keep in mind that the coalition or network does not need to have a pediatric focus or component. The AAP is interested in compiling information about all relevant networks. Include in your message:
- The name of the network (if known).
- The purpose of the network (if known).
- The area that the network serves.
- The contact information of an individual who could provide additional details about the collaboration or network.