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Recent catastrophic disasters, such as Hurricane Katrina, have provided many lessons for public health and emergency planners on assessing the unmet human service needs in preparation for, during and after a major emergency. Traditional methods of communicating health and emergency information often fall short of the goal of reaching everyone in a community. An essential preparedness activity must include a plan to address the needs of the entire population your agency serves. Identifying at-risk and hard-to-reach populations is an integral part of the planning process. This module will provide a guide to help define, locate, and reach diverse populations during an emergency.
- Define vulnerable populations and classify vulnerable populations into broad categories, and identify vulnerable populations
- Describe the community engagement process for identifying special populations in your community
- Understand the importance of research and the collection of demographic data for vulnerable populations
- Understand the importance of special needs support systems
- Identify barriers to self-sufficiency before, during, and after an emergency
- Identify non-traditional solutions to barriers, including communications and alerts
- Identify evacuation and shelter planning considerations for vulnerable populations