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Emergency Preparedness Plans and Perceptions Among a Sample of United States Childcare Providers

  • Kendall A. Leser (a1), Julie Looper-Coats (a2) and Andrew R. Roszak (a3)

Children are at increased risk for experiencing negative physical and mental health outcomes as a result of disasters. Millions of children spend their days in childcare centers or in residential family childcare settings. The purpose of this study was to describe childcare providers’ perceived levels of preparedness capabilities and to assess differences in levels of perceived preparedness between different types of childcare providers.


A national convenience sample of childcare center administrators and residential family childcare administrators completed a brief online survey about their preparedness efforts.


Overall, there were few differences in preparedness between childcare centers and residential family childcare providers. However, childcare centers were more likely to report that they had written plans (94.47%) than residential family childcare providers (83.73%) were (χ12=15.62; P<.001). Both types of providers were more likely to report being very prepared/prepared for fires (91.31%) than they were for any other type of emergency (flooding, active shooter, etc.; 45.08% to 79.34%).


Future work should assess how childcare providers respond to and recover from emergencies, as well as explore the types of resources childcare providers need in order to feel comfortable caring for children during such emergency situations. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2019;page 1 of 5)

Corresponding author
Correspondence and reprint requests to Kendall A. Leser, Miami University, 106 Phillips Hall, Oxford, Ohio 45056 (e-mail:
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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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