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all-hazards, health departments, preparedness, risk perception, training



  1. Barnett, Daniel J. MD, MPH
  2. Balicer, Ran D. MD, MPH
  3. Blodgett, David W. MD, MPH
  4. Everly, George S. Jr PhD
  5. Omer, Saad B. MBBS, MPH
  6. Parker, Cindy L. MD, MPH
  7. Links, Jonathan M. PhD


Since 9/11, public health has seen a progressive culture change toward a 24/7 emergency response organizational model. This transition entails new expectations for public health workers, including (1) a readiness and willingness to report to duty in emergencies and (2) an ability to effectively communicate risk to an anxious public about terrorism or naturally occurring disasters. To date, however, research on readiness education for health department workers has focused little attention upon the risk perceptions that may influence their willingness to report to duty during disasters, as well as their ability to provide effective emergency risk communication to the public. Here, we apply risk perception factors to explore the potential barriers and remedies to effective public health workforce emergency response.