Learning Opportunities: Resources for Hurricane Readiness & Recovery (The Hub Speaks, June 2020)

For the June issue of The Hub Speaks, we have curated resources and training opportunities for preparing for this year’s hurricane season. We will continue to provide updates and resources to help public health professionals and other community organizations to educate and assist in preparing their communities for natural disasters during a pandemic.

Florida Hurricane Response Hub Training Opportunities

Safety, Function, Action (SFA) for Disaster Responders
The Online SFA training is still being finalized and is not yet live/available
The Florida Hurricane Response Hub is developing the Safety, Function, Action for Disaster Responders (SFA) training, which covers strategies to foster well-being for disaster responders. SFA is an online training that will be available on Florida’s health eLearning management system, TRAIN, and participants will be able to complete the training independently and at their own pace. The goal of SFA is to provide a framework for achieving and maintaining a high-level of disaster health for the entire spectrum of professionals and volunteers who respond during disasters. A major innovation is the SFA pathway, sequencing six building blocks into training components: Safeguard, Sustain, Comfort, Connect, Advise, and Activate. This framework was originally developed by the Center for Disaster & Extreme Event Preparedness (DEEP Center) at the University of Miami and is being adapted and revised by the Florida Hurricane Response Hub. Visit here for more information.

Providers, Screening and Assessment Tools, and Training Resources
The Florida Hurricane Response Hub has created a specific page on their website dedicated to providing mental health resources and training for the disaster response workforce. These resources provide individuals affected by a disaster with important information and contacts. There is also a readily accessible tool that assists users in finding licensed counselors in their specific area. Specialists can then provide therapy services, even after distressing events such as natural disasters. These resources are applicable for the workforce responding to and recovering from the adverse impacts of COVID-19 and natural disasters such as hurricane events.

Psychological First Aid Workshops
The Florida Hurricane Response Hub is conducting Psychosocial First aid (PFA) training sessions with public health personnel and first responders. This day-long workshop is intended to inform the workforce with little or no compassionate care training, or who may want a refresher course. The training opportunities were to be initially held in-person in Miami-Dade County, as well as in Okaloosa and Bay County in the panhandle. Given COVID-19, PFA will now be adapted to live, online training workshops. The workshops will be interactive and not just didactic, as the idea of role playing is crucial to PFA. The trainer will walk participants through how to build a self-care plan and monitor compassion satisfaction and compassion fatigue. The ultimate goal is to enhance the compassionate care and the mental health resilience of public health responders in the state of Florida. While initially developed for disaster workforce responding to extreme weather disasters, the content can easily be applied for workforce responding to the impacts of COVID-19. Visit here for more information.


Louisiana Hurricane Response Hub Training Opportunities

Bioterrorism Preparedness: Infectious Disease Epidemiology and Public Health Surveillance
This course will introduce participants to basic concepts and terminology of infectious disease epidemiology and public health surveillance. Course topics include: key characteristics of microbial agents and their common modes of transmission; measures of association between disease and exposure; common study designs in observational research; sensitivity, specificity, and their application to infectious disease diagnosis; types and sources of data; as well as the applications of infectious disease surveillance systems.

The Management of Epidemic Disease
Population growth, societal aging, urbanization, rapid transportation, economic interdependence, and emerging infectious disease have expanded community vulnerability far beyond what could have been imagined a few generations ago. But, the expansion of medical technology has provided a vast array of tools and techniques for therapeutics and public health disease management. The instructor will examine disease as a social event in an evolving global community and will discuss why applying innovative practices are critical for tomorrow’s public health professionals.

Introduction to Epidemiology
This course will introduce key concepts in epidemiology that are needed for public health practice. These concepts include the measures of disease frequency, principles and techniques of surveillance, outbreak investigation, measures of association used in epidemiologic studies, causal reasoning, confounding, bias, and epidemiologic study design.


Texas Hurricane Response Hub Training Opportunities

Emergency Management and Public Health
The partnership between Emergency Management and Public Health is crucial during disasters. Public Health’s role in disasters is constantly evolving as partners are better understanding its capabilities and benefits in response. This course will list the foundational aspects of the field of emergency management; understand the basics of Emergency Support Functions (ESFs), specifically ESF 8 in Texas; recognize the fundamentals of the varying levels of emergency progression in Texas and the stakeholders involved; and describe the importance of information sharing and integration of essential elements of information into the EOC.

Emergency Management and Public Health – Working Together to Prepare for Disaster
It’s important to prepare yourself and your family when responding to a hurricane disaster. Explain what your first responder responsibilities are and have communication and evacuation plans ready for your family to keep them safe in your absence. This course will list and discuss the different possible physical effects of a disaster – and hurricanes specifically; list and discuss the different possible mental effects of a disaster – and hurricanes specifically; describe how to strengthen employee resilience through preparedness activities for themselves and for their families; and describe different methods/activities to mitigate the physical and mental health effects of disasters.


Puerto Rico Hurricane Response Hub Training Opportunities

Occupational Hazards in Hurricane Response
This course will discuss a variety of occupational hazards that are present in hurricane response. This course prepares emergency responders to identify health and safety hazards; provides examples of common work-related mental health stressors; and lists preparation actions that must be taken before a hurricane. Interested citizens, community leaders, and volunteers working in emergency response are welcomed and encouraged to attend.

Individual, Community & Municipal Emergency Plans
This course aims to educate emergency responders on the basic concepts of emergency plan preparation. These concepts range from the specificities of individual, family, community, and municipal jurisdiction emergency planning to the broader support functions that exist within emergency planning. Environmental, occupational, and public health workforce participants are encouraged to participate. Community leaders, first responders, citizens, and volunteers working in emergency response are also welcomed.


Georgia Hurricane Response Hub Training Opportunities

Media and DPH: Communication Best Practices
This video provides an overview of joint information centers, crisis and emergency risk communication and working with a public information officer to communicate with the media. There are no prerequisites.

Overview of R-STaR
This video provides an introduction to R-STaR, the Responder Safety, Tracking and Resilience module of within Georgia’s State Electronic Notifiable Disease Surveillance System. There are no prerequisites.

Overview of ESF#8 in Mass Care
This video provides an overview of Emergency Support Function #8 (Public Health and Medical Services) in mass care. Mass care includes sheltering, feeding and distribution of emergency supplies.

Psychological First Aid Overview
This video provides an overview of psychological first aid, an intervention that can be used with individuals exposed to disaster.


NNPHI Public Health Navigator

The NNPHI Public Health Learning Navigator, a curated online resource supporting quality learning for the public health workforce, has training opportunities related to basic hygiene, crisis and risk communication, decision making in emergency preparedness, and several other topics that could help you respond to COVID-19 and hurricanes in your community. Visit the navigator to learn more.


The Center for Disease Control and Prevention Resource Page

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has compiled resources for the public, healthcare professionals, health departments, health care facilities, and others. Visit the CDC’s website for a complete list of resources and state-level data. 



The Hurricane Response Hub is committed to providing customized technical assistance to individuals, organizations, and agencies recovering from the effects of 2017 Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria. To request technical assistance from one of the HRH technical assistance centers, submit the request below, and a representative from an HRH technical assistance center will contact you within two business days.

Interested in learning more about the efforts of the Hurricane Response Hub? Please sign up for the HRH newsletter.

Read Articles from The Hub Speaks

The Intersection of Hurricane Season and COVID-19: Implications for Emergency Shelters

Preparation for Pandemics, Tornadoes, and Hurricanes: An Interview with Tim Hatch – Alabama Department of Public Health


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