We recorded this Disaster Recovery Preparations episode on the day that Harvey was hitting Houston and had no idea just how bad that disaster would eventually become for those on the gulf coast.  On the day we publish this episode, we are both personally involved in the evacuations and preparations in advance of Irma. She is forecast to hit Florida, Georgia, and the Carolinas in the next few days. The timing for this discussion could not be more appropriate from a news perspective but this planning should have already taken place prior to this date for those in the paths of these deadly storms.

As you listen to this episode, know that we had no idea just how bad things were about to become for the millions of people under the stress of these major natural disasters.  Take care in your planning now if you haven’t been in these areas, your turn may be next and there is no way you want to be dealing with anything similar without a plan.

Help Me With HIPAA by HIPAA For MSPs Disaster Recovery Planning
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Today’s topic

Disaster Recovery Preparations

Notice from OCR list serve from the HHS Critical Infrastructure Protection Program in advance of Hurricane Harvey

The federal government continues to monitor Hurricane Harvey and deploying assets in response to the event. Hurricane Harvey’s current forecast track will approach the middle Texas coast on Friday and make landfall Friday night or early Saturday. Harvey is then likely to stall near or just inland of the middle Texas coast through the weekend. Maximum sustained winds are near 85 mph with higher gusts. Strengthening is forecast, and Harvey is expected to become a major hurricane by Friday before it reaches the middle Texas coast. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 25 miles from the center, and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 90 miles. Harvey is expected to produce total rain accumulations of 15 to 25 inches and isolated maximum amounts of 35 inches over the middle and upper Texas coast through next Wednesday.

Please consider stocking supplies needed through the weekend and notifying customers of ways they can prepare, considerations for prescription medicines, dialysis and other medical care and services for the duration of these weather systems.

Tracking the storm plus areas that may have something happening soon can be done with the NOAA site.

Tools Include

FEMA Mobile App

FEMA mobile app for disaster resources, weather alerts, and safety tips. The app provides a customizable checklist of emergency supplies, maps of open shelters and recovery centers, disaster survival tips, and weather alerts from the National Weather Service. The app also enables users to receive push notifications reminding them to take important steps to prepare their homes and families for disasters.

Resources at your fingertips document

Numerous hurricane-related resources are available from other resources such as HHS ASPR TRACIE.

HHS ASPR (Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response) TRACIE (Technical Resources, Assistance Center, and Information Exchange) has a lot of great stuff but not sure why they dropped off on promoting it. It seems to be making a come back. This is the second time this year they have referenced resources in there.

Disaster Lit:  Resource Guide for Disaster Medicine and Public Health


A great resource for all of us to prepare at home and work.

To learn more about what to do before, during and after severe weather, visit www.Ready.gov.

Specific HIPAA Guides for Disaster Recovery Planning

Emergency Situations: Preparedness, Planning, and Response

HHS HIPAA guide for professionals information on emergency preparedness.  Part of your HIPAA plans must include disaster recovery.

Emergency Planning

Preparedness planning for patients from OCR.  We need to educate patients on things to worry about in evacuations and disaster situations.  Patients that need specific care and medications need to understand what to do in the event they must evacuate or be in the midst of a disaster.  It is part of patient care to review it with them.

Disclosures Decision Tool

Emergency situations and major disasters mean all kinds of different decisions for disclosures of patient information.  There is also a tool that helps you decide what can be disclosed and to whom.