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Special Medical Needs and the Lessons of Hurricane Katrina

Major storms continue to demonstrate the need for comprehensive planning and detailed attention to those with special medical needs, including the homebound, bedridden, mobility-impaired, and those with special medical needs. Following the lessons learned in Katrina, how has New Orleans prepared? A panel featuring public safety and leaders from New Orleans will explore the development of special medical needs planning in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, including the components of the city-assisted evacuation plan. The panel will discuss the development and maintenance of the medical special needs components as well.

Learning Objectives:

1. Upon completion, participants will be able to discuss the Post Katrina Emergency Management Reform Act and changes to special medical need planning during disasters over the last 15 years;

2. Be able to describe a special medical needs registry and best practices for establishing and running such a registry;

3. Be able to discuss the importance of exercises and continuous improvement in special medical needs planning for emergencies and disasters. 


Nigg, J. M., Barnshaw, J., & Torres, M. R. (2006). Hurricane Katrina and the Flooding of New Orleans: Emergent Issues in Sheltering and Temporary Housing. The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 604(1), 113-128. doi:10.1177/0002716205285889

Horner, M. W., Ozguven, E. E., Marcelin, J. M., & Kocatepe, A. (2017). Special needs hurricane shelters and the ageing population: Development of a methodology and a case study application. Disasters, 42(1), 169-186. doi:10.1111/disa.12233

  • Format
  • Duration
    1 hour
  • Credits
    1 CE
  • After passing the course, your certificate will be available for download here.