National Preparedness Month

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National Preparedness Month

National Preparedness Month is an annual campaign to encourage Americans to prepare for emergencies and disasters. This effort is led by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and is sponsored by the Ready Campaign in partnership with Citizen's Corp. This year's National Preparedness Month theme is, "Disasters Don’t Wait. Make Your Plan Today." The FEMA urges people to prepare for specific threats such as floods, wildfires, hurricanes, and power outages. The campaign will feature Public Service Announcements and multimedia products around 4 weekly themes:

●   Week 1: September 1-5 - Make A Plan
●   Week 2: September 6-12 - Build A Kit
●   Week 3: September 13-19 - Prepare for Disasters
●   Week 4: September 20-26 - Teach Youth About Preparedness

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is actively engaged in preparedness initiatives that focus on the power of preparedness, which includes personal preparedness, pandemic influenza planning, policy and partnerships, and public health response. Also, see the CDC National Preparedness Month web page. When major disasters strike, visit the U.S. Census Bureau's Emergency Management page to access demographic and economic data for the impacted areas.

Connect with Families to Encourage Disaster Preparedness

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and FEMA are working together to ensure that all infants, children, adolescents, young adults, and their parents are prepared in case of emergencies. To do so, the AAP and FEMA would like to bring the conversation of emergency preparedness to pediatric practices. During office visits, pediatricians can remind children and their guardians to learn about potential hazards in the area, to create an emergency plan, and to build an emergency kit. The AAP Family Readiness Kit can be used to supplement these conversations. Below are potential questions that could be asked during visits with families:

  • Do you know what hazards affect your home ad your community?

  • Do you have a family communications plan?

  • Do you have an emergency kit packed and know what it should include?

  • Are you familiar with the emergency plans at your child's school or child care program?

Additional way to promote pediatric readiness for families include:

Improve Office Preparedness

Hurricane season is upon us, and pediatricians need to be ready to provide care for their patients even when normal business operations are disrupted. Advanced preparedness planning can mitigate risk, ensure financial stability, strengthen the medical home, and help promote the health of children in the community. The AAP offers resources for office practices:


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