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                      Dedicated to Good Health for all Texans
Public Health Leadership
in Disaster Response Training Programs

The Institute was awarded a grant by the Texas Department of Health to develop two training programs for public health leadership in disaster response. One program will focus on enhancing public health agency/system preparedness and the other will focus on building an effective community wide response. The project began on February 2nd, 2004 and is projected to be completed by March 31st, 2005.

Leadership in Disaster Response training is a major initiative being undertaken to build and/or enhance leadership capacity throughout Texas' local and regional public health system. The initial conceptual design was based on issues identified in answer to demands being made on the system and gaps that have been identified based on past performance as well as knowledge of the mechanisms that best support the further development of both the skills and the mindset to respond to bioterrorism threats.

Specific system wide competencies will be addressed in this project, including: decision-making and delegation; day-to-day operations versus emergency response; overcoming political and organizational barriers; evaluating preparedness; responding to development issues identified by the evaluation; and, dealing with future challenges not known to specialists in disaster preparedness at the time of this training. This will form a "baseline" of skills for the State of Texas from which future initiatives can be launched.