Recovery Resources

Disaster recovery requires the continued provision of care to meet the needs of an affected community. Rather than simply restoring a community to its pre-disaster state, the disaster recovery period also affords the opportunity to build a healthier and more resilient community. The roles of the healthcare and public health sectors in disaster recovery has only recently been prioritized, and there is still much to learn about how organizations and professionals engaged in healthcare and public health may best contribute to community disaster recovery. This webpage provides resources for healthcare and public health workers to more effectively plan for and engage in disaster recovery.

What can I find here?

This webpage contains summarized, annotated resources that have been categorized according to the following topical areas: general information, information for healthcare systems, information for public health departments, and information for managers, workers, and responders. Types of content include: online trainings, webinars, guidance documents, templates, and search engines. All resources are from trusted sources, including but not limited to federal agencies and national organizations, and these materials are freely available online. Content was chosen that would be pertinent to healthcare systems and public health departments nation-wide.

The listing of these selected recovery resources does not constitute endorsement by the NCDMPH.


General Information

Resources in this section have a broad focus and may be cross-cutting in their content.

  1. Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR). Recovery Resource Library. 2015.

    This webpage compiles resources in the categories of: Public Health Issues, Health Care Services Impacts, Hospital Recovery Guides, Behavioral Health Impacts, Environmental Health Impacts, Environmental Hazards, Safety Issues for Response and Recovery Workers, Children in Disasters, Social Services Impacts, Food Safety and Regulated Medical Products, Disaster Assistance, Disaster Recovery Planning for States and Local Governments, Community Resilience, At-Risk Individuals.

    Resource type: Webpage

  2. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). IS-2900: National Disaster Recovery Framework (NDRF) Overview 2013

    "This course provides individuals supporting disaster recovery efforts with a foundation in National Disaster Recovery Framework (NDRF) key concepts, core principles and roles and responsibilities of NDRF leadership (including those of individuals and households to governmental entities at the local, State, tribal, and Federal levels, and between public, private and nonprofit sectors."

    Resource type: Online training

  3. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). IS0-558: Public Works and Disaster Recovery2013

    This online course explains how public works is involved in disaster recovery. It discusses the role of public works, as well as how and why public works should plan for recovery, and the primary areas that should be included in such plans.

    Resource type: Online training

  4. International Economic Development Council. Disaster Preparedness and Recovery Webinar Series 2014

    "This 12-part webinar series provides practical information on key topics in disaster preparedness and economic recovery for economic development organizations and chambers of commerce. Each seminar hosts economic recovery practitioners with real world experience and leadership in the subject matter. Each seminar will feature efforts made in disaster-impacted communities."

    Resource type: Webinar

  5. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). National Disaster Recovery Framework 2011

    This guide provides a flexible structure that enables disaster recovery managers to operate in a unified and collaborative manner and to promote effective recovery. The National Disaster Recovery Framework (NDRF) is a construct to optimally engage Federal resources and authorities, and to incorporate the full capabilities of all sectors in support of community recovery. It focuses on how to best restore, redevelop, and revitalize the health, social, economic, natural, and environmental fabric of the community and build a more resilient nation.

    Resource type: Guidance

  6. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Long Term Community Recovery Planning Process: A Self-Help Guide 2014

    "The purpose of this guide is to provide communities with a framework for long-term community recovery [LTCR] that has been used by FEMA and its technical advisors over the past several years. This LTCR process has been successful in bringing communities together to focus on their long-term recovery issues and needs and to develop projects and strategies to address those needs. The recovery effort for these communities is still underway, but the LTCR plan and the process employed to develop the plan has been a critical part of their recovery effort."

    Resource type: Guidance

  7. Association of Bay Area Governments. Long-Term Disaster Recovery Plan 2009

    This template recovery plan serves as a model for government agencies to plan for disaster recovery. It covers four main issues pertaining to long-term recovery: recovery financing issues, recovery of government facilities and services, long-term housing recovery, and long-term recovery of business.

    Resource type: Template

  8. Fairfax County (VA) Office of Emergency Management. Fairfax County Pre-Disaster Recovery Plan 2012

    This county-level pre-disaster recovery planning document was noted by FEMA in its NDRF training (ICS 2900). Its purpose is to provide the county "with a single reference for guiding policy and action during recovery from a significant natural or human-caused disaster," and "allow the government to support the private and nonprofit sectors as we work together to restore the economic base, neighborhoods, social fabric, and other elements over the long-term." The website additionally contains an after action report from a tabletop exercise that was used to test the plan.

    Resource type: Template

  9. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Disaster Recovery Center Locator

    "The Disaster Recovery Center (DRC) Locator allows individuals to search for DRCs nearest to their location. DRC Locator also provides additional information about each DRC, such as hours of operation, services offered, and driving directions to the DRC." Users can search by address, city, and state and/or zip code.

    Resource type: Search engine


Information for Healthcare Systems

The recovery resources listed here are relevant to healthcare systems, including hospitals and other healthcare facilities.

  1. Harvard School of Public Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Exercise Program. Essential Functions and Considerations for Hospital Recovery 2013

    This document was prepared as a resource for hospitals to manage recovery in the wake of a disaster. It reviews strategies and concepts for planning, implementing, and assessing recovery plans and strategies for hospitals and covers wide range of topics including scope and objectives of recovery planning, activation of recovery plans, recovery organizational structure and teams, risk assessment, COOP, communications and information sharing, financial and legal issues, personnel management, volunteer and donations management, materials management, security management, mental health issues, and the health, safety, and welfare of hospital workers.

    Resource type: Guidance

  2. Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response. Healthcare Preparedness Capabilities: National Guidance for Healthcare System Preparedness 2012

    This guidance document provides information for hospitals, healthcare systems, and their partners to better prepare for, prevent, respond to, and rapidly recover from Mass Casualty Incidents or Medical Surges. Emergency planners should coordinate recovery plans that aim to revitalize and rebuild the public health and medical system of the community. This document provides information on the functions and the resource elements (Plans, Equipment, and Skills) necessary for effective recovery.

    Resource type: Guidance

  3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Remediation and Infection Control Considerations for Reopening Healthcare Facilities Closed Due to Extensive Water and Wind Damage

    This guidance document contains information to assist healthcare facilities clean up and reopen following extensive water and wind damage, as may occur in a disaster. The page contains links to recommendations from governmental agencies and professional associations. It covers worker health and safety, mold remediation and structural recovery, water and electrical utilities, ventilation system, food service, and other considerations.

    Resource type: Guidance

  4. US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Medical Surge Capacity and Capability: The Healthcare Coalition in Emergency Response and Recovery 2009

    "This handbook provides guidance to healthcare planners on how to develop, implement, and maintain cost-effective and response-oriented healthcare coalitions. It describes the common elements of an effective Healthcare Coalition that may be applied in any locale" to operationally support individual healthcare organizations and the larger community response to and recovery from disasters.

    Resource type: Guidance


Information for Public Health Departments

The recovery resources listed here are relevant to public health departments.

  1. Alabama Department of Public Health, Preparedness and Emergency Response Learning Center (PERLC). The Emergency management Assistant Compact (EMAC) and its Application for Public Health Emergency Response and Recovery Operations 2008

    This online broadcast provides an introduction to EMAC''s organization, processes, and procedures, and how EMAC is used to provide public health and environmental health emergency assistance during the 2005 hurricane season. The broadcast addresses how to mitigate resource shortages in future disasters and the recovery process.

    Resource type: Webinar

  2. Northwest Preparedness and Emergency Response Learning Center (NWPERLC), Washington. Mental Health and Preparedness: Are We Ready? 2004

    This webinar discusses "How frontline public health practitioners can help respond to the mental health needs of a community following a disaster. Knowing what to plan for and what types of adaptive behaviors follow disasters is essential. Promoting community resilience and mitigating maladaptive behavior are the goals of such a plan."

    Resource type: Webinar

  3. Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, National Center for Disaster Preparedness, Columbia Regional Learning Center. Human Dimension to Disaster Recovery

    This webcast features Dr. Irwin Redlener, Principal Investigator of the Columbia Regional Learning Center, as he "Describes how improved coordination of intelligence services, enhanced detection of biological agents, and better infrastructure capacity can enable the public health sector to work more effectively. He also talks about the need for mobile medical care, electronic medical records, and further preparation for medical healthcare facility evacuations."

    Resource type: Webinar

  4. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Community Assessment for Public Health Emergency Response (CASPER) Toolkit: Second edition 2019

    The Community Assessment for Public Health Emergency Response (CASPER) enables public health practitioners and emergency management officials to rapidly determine the health status and needs of an affected community following a disaster. CASPER uses valid statistical methods to gather these data, allowing health officials to make decisions and prioritizations based on sound information.

    Resource type: Template

  5. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Public Health Mutual Aid Agreements - A Menu of Suggested Provisions 2007

    This template suggests model agreements for public health officials interested in developing mutual aid agreements. Mutual aid agreements can be effective tools to assist government agencies in sharing information, data, supplies, resources, equipment, or personnel for the purpose of protecting the public's health. The CDC Public Health Law Program, in coordination with CDC Coordinating Office for Terrorism Preparedness and Emergency Response, gathered, reviewed, analyzed, condensed, and categorized provisions from numerous and varied mutual aid agreements to create these model agreements.

    Resource type: Template


Information for Managers, Workers, and Responders

Many recovery considerations deal with managing and caring for workers who are involved in recovery. Resources which generally address management of that workforce are listed here. 

  1. Mountain West PERLC. Community Recovery: Volunteer Management in Disasters.

    This online training covers the utilization and management of spontaneous volunteers, both affiliated and non-affiliated, during the recovery phase of a disaster. It covers topics such as notifying and managing volunteers, as well as deploying them based on training and skill sets. The training integrates lecture with an opportunity to engage in experiential learning by guiding the learner through a scenario, in this case the recovery phase of a wildfire, requiring problem solving and application of public health principles. 

    Resource type: Online training

  2. Alabama Department of Public Health, Preparedness and Emergency Response Learning Center (PERLC). Staffing for Emergency Response and Recovery 2006

    This recorded conference addresses questions related to staffing and management during and after a disaster. While much has been done to educate and train the workforce to handle disasters, numerous questions remain surrounding this topic, such as ensuring that the right people are in the right places with the appropriate resources to handle the response and recovery elements of their job. Recovery topics include transition from responding to recovery, population shifts, housing for employees and volunteers, future planning, debriefing, and workers' emotional and psychological states.

    Resource type: Webinar