In the middle of the ninth annual National Preparedness Month, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported promising public health news Friday in its Sept. 14 issue of the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report: A large percentage of U.S. households are generally more prepared for disasters.
In a study conducted in households in 14 states between 2006 and 2010, the agency acquired statistics measuring household preparedness measures and found that:
- 94.8 percent of households had a working battery-operated flashlight;
- 89.7 percent had a three-day supply of medications for everyone who required them;
- 82.9 percent had a three-day supply of food;
- 77.7 percent had a working battery-operated radio; and
- 53.6 percent had a three-day supply of water.
Only 21.1 percent of participants had a written evacuation plan in case of disaster, while non-English speaking and minority respondents were less likely to have preparedness tools in their households. Additionally, men were more likely than women to report that their households were equipped for disaster.
Throughout September, more than 3,000 U.S. organizations are supporting efforts to ensure Americans are prepared for an emergency. Timed with National Preparedness Month, APHA is encouraging the public to recognize its annual Get Ready Day on Tuesday, Sept. 18. On Get Ready Day, APHA staff will host an exhibit booth at a local Safeway grocery store and a blood drive at the Association’s Washington, D.C., office. Visit the American Red Cross and enter sponsor code 05314622 to schedule a donation.