For Immediate Release
Contact: Media Relations, (202) 777-2509

Carry-Along Guide to Help Public Health Workers Manage Disasters

Public Health Management of Disasters: The Pocket Guide

Author: Linda Young Landesman, DrPH, MSW

Washington, D.C., January 23, 2006— Designed as a companion to the previously published Public Health Management of Disasters, this new pocket guide is intended to be a quick field resource to public health interventions in the days immediately preceding and following emergencies. It includes response strategies for 13 disasters and advice on such topics as general preparation, mental health, food and vaccine safety and data collection for decision-making.

The author of the pocket guide, Linda Young Landesman, DrPH, MSW, is a national expert on the role of public health in disaster preparedness and response. She has authored and edited six books, including “Public Health Management of Disasters: The Practice Guide,” published by the American Public Health Association, and has developed national standards for emergency medical response.

The pocket guide includes an overview with: the roles and responsibilities of public health authorities; the role of plans, surveillance and information systems; a description of the incident command system; and an outline of federal resources.

A chapter on preparation describes the specific tasks to be carried out by public health personnel immediately before and in response to a disaster. The disasters chapter sets out strategies for how to prepare for and respond to 13 different disasters, from blizzards to volcanoes. A chapter on diseases illustrates how to recognize a bioterrorist event and how to prepare for and respond to infectious disease and diseases common to disasters, such as tetanus, measles and heat stress.

Another chapter tells how to organize the mental health services needed by disaster victims. Food safety is covered in another chapter, which reminds aid workers how to store and handle food safely and how to take care of vaccines in the event of a power outage. A data collection chapter focuses on the public health data that needs to be collected and communicated before, during and after a disaster strikes.

Ordering Information: Published by the American Public Health Association, 2005, ISBN: 0-87553-069-9, 107 pages, cost is $32 ($22.40 for APHA members), plus shipping and handling. To order, call toll free (888) 320-APHA; fax (888) 361-APHA; e-mail or visit APHA’s Web site:

Please send your request for a review copy on letterhead to APHA Publications Marketing, 800 I Street, NW, Washington, D.C. 20001-3710, or fax to (202) 777-2531.

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