Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief

Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief


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Monitoring Emergencies



From official sources (O.S.) and media (M). It does not represent PAHO's official position.

Bolivia 10/23/2014

Drought. Civil Defense will deliver 30 tons of humanitarian assistance in the border town of Charaña, which will benefit 649 families and 1,500 head of cattle affected by drought. The director of the Emergency Operations Center said on Wednesday that the governor of the department of Santa Cruz declared a drought emergency affecting 12 municipalities in the region; the effects will be mitigated with a budget of 4 million bolivianos. (m.: ABI).

Brazil 10/23/2014

Several cities are in state of emergency due to various natural hazards. Drought is affecting the municipalities of Olhos d'Água and Palmópolis in Minas Gerais; and also Bom Jesus da Lapa, Bahia, and Redondo Well, in Sergipe. The cities of Mato Rico, Paraná and Santa Rosa, Rio Grande do Sul are being affected by rainfall. Finally, the municipality of Saudades, in Santa Catarina, is in emergency due to floods. (o.s.: Civil Defense).

Nicaragua 10/23/2014

Floods. Yellow Alert remains; showers are expected to persist in the country, with potential for landslides, mudslides, overflows and flooding of homes, mainly in Rivas, Granada, Masaya, San Juan River, the South Caribbean and the Autonomous Region. More than 100 families have been evacuated and 27 people have died. So far 60,345 people have been affected nationwide; there are 32 active shelters and 90 solidarity houses, where 1,053 families remain. There are also 6,214 damaged homes, including destroyed, partially destroyed, flooded, and in relocation. (o.s.: INETER; m.c.: La Voz del Sandinismo).

Bolivia 10/23/2014

Drought. Civil Defense will deliver 30 tons of humanitarian assistance in the border town of Charaña, which will benefit 649 families and 1,500 head of cattle affected by drought. The director of the Emergency Operations Center said on Wednesday that the governor of the department of Santa Cruz declared a drought emergency affecting 12 municipalities in the region; the effects will be mitigated with a budget of 4 million bolivianos. (m.: ABI).



Information Management and Communication in Emergencies and Disasters

Manual for Disaster Response Teams

The Pan American Health Organization coordinates a Regional Disaster Response Team and supports country efforts to develop national health sector teams to respond to emergencies and disasters. These multi-disciplinary teams have expressed the need for specialists in the fields of information management and communication. The role of these specialists is to produce quality information which can be shared with the people and agencies that need it. The information must be produced on time, in the proper format, and distributed through the most appropriate channels.

This work can only succeed when performed in a team setting. Disaster management experts, communicators, or administrators cannot work in isolation. It is the integration and balance of their efforts that make the difference. Communication specialists need to understand the reality of disasters. Likewise, those with disaster management and public health experience can make better decisions when they can rely on the support of communicators. This book is part of the effort to improve technical capacity in the Region of the Americas and has been developed from lessons learned and practical experience gained in countless disasters. The manual provides recommendations on dealing with the context and conditions where information is needed, guidelines on producing reports and distributing information for different audiences, how to manage communication media, and planning the work of communication during emergency response. It complements other PAHO/ WHO efforts in communicating for risk management.

Summary of the content

Chapter 1 Communication and information management during emergency and disaster response
Chapter 2 Planning communication and information management for emergencies and disasters
Chapter 3 Managing information during an emergency or disaster
Chapter 4 Working with communication media
Chapter 5 Developing messages and communication materials
Annexes: Checklists, situation report format, examples of situation reports and press releases, Web sites, acronyms and bibliography

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