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Preparing Racially and Ethnically Diverse Communities for Public Health Emergencies

Andrulis, D.P.; Siddiqui, N.J.; Gantner, J.
Health Affairs

September 1, 2007

The tragedy of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans confirmed that effective implementation of public health preparedness programs and policies will require compliance from all racial and ethnic populations. This study reviews current resources and limitations and suggests future directions for integrating diverse communities into related strategies. It documents research and interventions, including promising models and practices that address preparedness for minorities. However, findings reveal a general lack of focus on diversity and suggest that future preparedness efforts need to fully integrate factors related to race, culture, and language into risk communication, public health training, measurement, coordination, and policy at all levels.