Index > Public Health & Medical: Public/Private Partnerships
July 2010: Seattle's Local Food Action Initiative (LFAI) has been working to improve the city's local food system to "advance the City of Seattle's interrelated goals of race and social justice, environmental sustainability, economic development, and emergency preparedness." Begun in 2008, Resolution 31019 was implemented after the city passed Resolution 30990 a "Zero Waste Strategy". LFAI's goals include increase support of local agriculture in the surrounding rural areas as well as in inner-city locations; reduce the carbon footprint of the city's food system; to support strategies to connect major institutions like hospitals, jails and schools to local food sourcing; and to "Build community through developing community gardens, promoting farmers' markets," and involving immigrant communities.
June 2010: The Department of Homeland Security announced new voluntary accreditation and certification measures program to help the private sector coordinate with DHS in the event of an emergency a press release announced. DHS called the Voluntary Private Sector Preparedness Accreditation and Certification Program (PS-Prep) a "major milestone" in working with the private sector to achieve one of the goals outlined by the 9/11 Commission. DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano said "These new standards will provide our private sector partners with the tools they need to enhance the readiness and resiliency of our nation."
June 2010: According to the Baltimore Sun though there are initial response plans for cooperation, currently, there is no specific emergency response system for the Chesapeake Bay should there be an accident from an oil spill. William C. Boicourt from the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science at Horn Point told the Sun, "There is no functioning [emergency response] system on the Bay in the terms of what we can call operational." Officials with the Coast Guard did tell the Sun there are contingency efforts in coordination with federal, state and local officials to work with the "party responsible" for the accident who is ultimately in charge of cleanup efforts.
October 14 '08: Last week, October 8, the United Nations observed the International Day for Disaster Reduction. Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon said recent disasters such as Cyclone Nargis and the Wenchuan Earthquake have pushed highlighted the imperative for international disaster response initiatives and partnership for local, state and international communities and governments.
April 30 '08: Members of US and Mexican federal, state and local emergency response agencies and government officials have announced a partnership targeting cross-border disaster preparedness training and response. The disaster training is conducted through the US-Mexiao Border 2012 Program which has joined multiple US and Mexican federal agencies together.
March 24 '08: The Star Bulletin reported a partnership of 12 hospitals across Hawaii which participated in a mock bioterror response drill. The exercise, conducted in partnership by the state's Department of Health and the Healthcare Association of Hawaii simulated exposure to anthrax and was meant to simulate the activation of the Strategic National Stockpile, a press release read. (Additional reading here, and here.)
March 3 '08: Washington Technology reported that L-3 subsidiary MPRI Inc. will partner with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to help train federal agency "with preparedness training and simulation exercises to cope with a wide range of hazards, including acts of bioterrorism and pandemic outbreaks," WashTech reported.
February 13 '08: Several community-based avian flu pandemic preparedness sites have partnered to form a new family-targeted avian pandemic preparedness website called GetPandemicReady.org. The GetPandemicReady site was begun by the Get Pandemic Ready Team (GPR Team) and the website is hosted byNez Perce County in Idaho.
January 31 '08: A collaborative project is practicing professional health care providers in South Carolina "for bioterrorism and public health emergency event recognition and response." The group is called the Disaster Preparedness and Response Training Network and it is funded through a $3.5 million federal grant from the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response in the Department of Health and Human Services.
November 16 '07: The Federal Communications Commission has announced a new push to link rural hospitals to urban doctors through the Internet, WBBM AM 780 reported. "Speaking in Chicago, FCC Chairman Kevin Martin outlined the $400 million Rural Health Care pilot program which he says will link 6,000 hospitals, clinics and research facilities in 43 states."
September 26 '07: The Associated Press reported that more than 2,700 financial institutions will participate in a cyber pandemic preparedness drill under the aegis of the U.S. Department of Treasury. The drill, which began at the beginning of the week, "is scheduled to run for three weeks," and will cover topics such as absenteeism, the transfer of money and the economic infrastructure's security during a bird flu outbreak.
September 11 '07: In New York City, on the six anniversary of the terrorist attacks in Washington D.C., New York the crashed Flight 93 in Pennsylvania, area hospitals and health organizations are working to incorporate best practices and lessons learned through collaborative symposia and conferences, the New York Sun reported. Among those held, the New York Downtown Hospital is holding its fifth annual emergency preparedness symposium.
August 16 '07: In a press release some of the largest healthcare organizations in the U.S. announced the formation of a new cooperative effort and partnership to help "the continued delivery of medicines during a severe public health emergency." The new partnership is called RxResponse and represents cooperation among private sector organizations and the federal government's Health and Human Services Department.
June 19 '07: A large partnership of federal, state governments, public health officials in Hawaii, Yale University's School of Medicine, and the University of Hawaii Manoa have announced a continual medical education course for public health officials online, the Honolulu Advertiser reported. The course, Pacific Emergency Management, Preparedness and Response Information Network and Training Services is the first of its kind in the U.S.
June 12 '07: Members of the private sector, local and state governments, and medical officials and experts are gathered in Washington DC for the Healthier America Summit. According to a press release in addition to general health issues, participants are working to find ways to increase community pandemic preparedness.
June 8 '07: Reuters reported that IBM has released pandemic prediction software which will be donated to public health officials to help predict and mitigate any possible international health emergency. The software, called Spatiotemporal Epidemiological Modeler or STEM will be available to more than 20 health agencies worldwide.
May 3 '07: South Carolina Department of Health officials, along with Catawba Indian Nation tribal officials and Logical Images have partnered to introduce new telemedicine technology which will help 65 rural state hospitals as well as urban area medical centers, share visual information through a system called VisualDx, designed for remote information sharing and diagnosis, a press release announced.
May 3 '07: In Terre Haute, Indiana, local city, medical, hospital and state officials have partnered to underwrite and film a pandemic preparedness video which will be put into DVD format for circulation throughout the state, the Tribune Star reported. Officials told the Star that after several discussions, a pandemic preparedness film would be the best way to reach a large audience.
April 12 '07: In East Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, the Post Gazette reported that local Quaker Valley school nurse Darcy Yeloushan has been working with here counterparts on the state level to prepare the school and the surrounding area for a flu pandemic by developing a response plan.
April 5 '07: In Maryland this month, more than 50 organizations have participated in emergency preparedness training sessions designed to raise awareness about the special needs community and how families of members of those communities can prepare for disasters. A Center for Disability and Special Needs Preparedness press release announced.
April 4 '07: A federally-funded report compiled by the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center's Center for Biodiversity found that a local Pennsylvania community-based civic engagement plan designed to prepare the community for pandemic response was the most effective route to mitigating an outbreak of disease, the Tribune Review reported.
March 30 '07: The nation's first state health information network soon will go online in Delaware, Government Health IT reported. The network will link the state's health and hospital officials together so that they can share data, toxicology results, X-rays, and other health-related information.
March 30 '07: Funding from the National Science Foundation will go to help a joint project designed to simulate the spread of infectious diseases through the use of the TeraGrid, Carolina Newswire reported. The grid, the world's largest cyber-infrastructure, will be monitored by RTI International and the Virginia Biometrics Institute at Virginia Tech.
March 21 '07: Medical specialists at the Johns Hopkins University have developed new free medical disaster response software for hospital officials to help calculate "the impact of such crises as a flu epidemic, bioterrorist attack, flood or plane crash," the JHU Gazette reported.
March 19 '07: The state of Michigan and the federal government are cooperating in an exercise to test the state's ability to mobilize volunteers "in the event of a federal public heath emergency," a press release from the Michigan Department of Community Health. Among those participating in the exercise: the Office of Public Health Preparedness and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
March 5 '07: Tribal members from the Confederated Salish-Kootenai and Blackfoot tribes have been taking an 18-month course to train for hazmat disaster response, the Daily Interlake reported. The 24-member crew, called the Hazardous Action Workers Keeping Safe (HAWKS) "will be specialists on how to handle hazardous materials and what to do in the event of "agro-terrorism", the Daily reported.
February 19 '07: According to federal guidelines issued earlier this month, the focus of pandemic response should rely on the local level with state and local community organizations working to install a chain of command and communication to help keep communities running. The Episcopal Church announced their pandemic preparedness and response plans for all dioceses and parishes recently.
February 15 '07: In Palm Beach County, Florida, a group of hospitals, medical responder agencies and non profit organizations have been working to share information, training experience and resources to help prepare for a medical, natural or man made disaster, the Palm Beach Post reported.
January 26 '07: Researchers at the Louisiana State Medical Society Educational and Research Foundation have received a grant totaling $254,000 from the Physician's Foundation for Health Systems Excellence to conduct a study analyzing state and local emergency evacuation and preparation plans during Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, the Shreveport Times reported.
January 24 '07: In South Dakota, responders participating in a terrorism response exercise said experience was the best teacher, reported. The recent statewide exercise sponsored by the South Dakota Department of Health gave responders and government leaders valuable lessons-learned for future events officials said.
November 27 '06: Churches and other religious organizations play a vital role in their communities during emergency situations because of their intimate knowledge of the community and their outreach. To help build on that relationship and response ability, the Centers for Disease Control and the Springfield-Greene County Health Department in Missouri are partnering to work with faith-based organizations in the local area to help improve emergency preparedness and response capabilities.
October 27 '06: The mental health of first responders during a disaster can be significantly damaged, like the victims of the disaster who the responders are trying to help, Homeland Response reported this week. According to mental health experts and first responder organizations, the stress of response can pose serious mental health risks.
October 13 '06: The Associated Press reported Friday that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta is pushing a new pandemic quarantine plan using "primitive infection-control" measures to mitigate the impact of a large-scale infection from bird flu or another disease while vaccines and drugs are being developed.
September 13 '06: A new report released by the RAND Corporation looks into the national security risks the US government faces in pandemic diseases and their spread in an increasingly globalized world. "Indeed, the US State Department considers disease a potential war trigger," the RAND report reads.
September 11 '06: At a regional workshop for medical first responders and emergency officials, the Assistant Secretary of Health Admiral John Agwunobi said the US has a "long way to go before we can say we are prepared for any and every hazard," a Utah NBC affiliate, KSL reported.
August 9 '06: A new collaborative effort is underway in Louisiana to repair and restructure the healthcare system to help medical officials and responders develop more flexible ways to handle disaster and emergency situations as well as surge capacity mitigation.
July 18 '06: A new article published in the Annals of Internal Medicine found the greatest benefit to pandemic flu preparedness is an "effective coordination among state and local public health authorities and individual health care providers." The article, the result of work compiled by the American College of Physicians, looked at the responsibilities set forth in federal plans to plan, prevent and address the threat of a flu pandemic, should it hit the United States. In the article, eight recommendations were given to help address better practices and methods of confronting pandemic response.
July 6 '06: A new internet-based tool designed to help triage emergency management and medical response during an emergency was unveiled by the Department of Health and Human Services on Wednesday. The tool was created to access and use public health information about victims of a disaster, elderly and disabled people, and it will work within the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 19996 (HIPPA) Privacy Rule to help coordinate information so that federal, state and local medical responders can make decisions quickly, HHS officials said in a press release.
March 16 '06: Though governments around the world are preparing for what many fear is an inevitable bird flu outbreak among humans, the New York Times reported Thursday, businesses may be the most important part of the plan to keep vital services running around the world, and many businesses might not be prepared.
March 6 '06: Health officials in the US are increasing preventative measures to help prepare the poultry industry for a possible bird flu outbreak in American poultry, Knight Ridder news services reported Monday.
February 27 '06: A website dedicated to disseminating information regarding avian bird flu is enlisting the help of medical professionals around the world and in the US, the Associated Press reported this weekend.
February 3 '06: Boston University has received a federal grant and approval for a new bioresearch facility in Boston's South End. The $128 million federal grant will help toward the construction of a Level 4 laboratory - diseases to be researched will be some of the most virulent known to man - diseases like Ebola, Marburg, and anthrax viruses, the Boston Globe reported Friday on its website.
January 2 '06: New York City officials announced recently that they will begin to equip the city's hospitals with radiation detection systems to help them prepare for surge capacity in the event of a dirty bomb attack, the Associated Press reported.
December 29 '06: A new voluntary program sponsored by the Dairy Farmers of America is designed to increase the level of security on the nation's farms a press release announced. mySecurity, as the program is called was created to allow members of the DFA to protect their families and food supply as well provide information, tools and emergency planning guidelines.
December 28 '06: The Associated Press has reported that government officials in South Carolina are working with the state's nursing homes to develop effective evacuation plans and storm preparedness in the event a large hurricane like Rita or Katrina were to hit. Nursing home care givers have said they need help with evacuation plans to effectively help the elderly patients.
December 19 '06: Preparing for a pandemic must include the community, private sector and state and local government all working together, Utah officials told the Associated Press recently.
December 13 '05: A coalition of federal, state and local government leaders, along with environmental groups and others are planning on a new 15-year, $20 billion plan to help clean the Great Lakes and decrease the amount of pollution, improve drinking water and connect communities through the waterways that make up one of the largest and most important networks in the country, the Associated Press reported Tuesday.