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Disaster Preparedness and Pandemic Plans: A Survey of Nebraska Home Health Agencies

  • Michele D. Kassmeier (a1), Sharon Medcalf (a1), Keith Hansen (a1) and Philip W. Smith (a1) (a2)
Abstract
Objective

To develop a tool that assesses disaster-planning strategies used by Home Health Agencies (HHAs) throughout Nebraska.

Methods

A survey of HHAs in Nebraska was created, distributed, and analyzed to assess and gain information about their written disaster plans. Part 1 of this 2-part survey identified agencies with written disaster plans and collected basic information about plan and structure. Part 2 identified detailed characteristics of the HHA and their pandemic influenza plans. Also, pandemic influenza preparedness of HHAs was assessed and compared to other health care institutions.

Results

More than 90% of the HHAs that responded to the survey reported that they have written disaster plans; almost half of the plans address strategies for surge capacity. The majority of HHAs with plans also have disaster-specific plans for pandemic influenza preparedness. Our findings suggest that Nebraska HHAs have taken substantial steps toward preparedness, although individual plans may vary considerably.

Conclusions

This survey provides a first step at evaluating HHA disaster preparedness plans. It also demonstrates that Nebraska HHAs have taken substantial steps toward being prepared, although individual plans vary widely. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2013;0:1–9)

Copyright
Corresponding author
Address correspondence and reprint requests to Michele Kassmeier, Center for Preparedness Education, College of Public Health, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Maurer Center for Public Health, Rm 1043, Omaha, NE 68198-4320. (e-mail Michele.Kassmeier@unmc.edu)
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Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness
  • ISSN: 1935-7893
  • EISSN: 1938-744X
  • URL: /core/journals/disaster-medicine-and-public-health-preparedness
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