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Healthcare Preparedness

Helping communities improve healthcare delivery during large-scale emergencies

Healthcare preparedness and response enables the health care delivery system to save lives during emergencies and disaster events that exceed the day-to-day capacity and capability of existing health and emergency response systems.

ORAU healthcare preparedness experts conduct exercises; organize, facilitate and evaluate key stakeholder meetings; and develop state and local planning tools to help communities across the United States improve their healthcare preparedness and delivery during an emergency or event.

Industries we serve

  • Federal preparedness agencies
  • State, local and territorial public health departments
  • Preparedness professionals
  • National preparedness organizations and agencies
Small group of adults in masks taking instruction from emergency personnel

What we offer

ORAU has been supporting CDC’s Public Health Emergency Preparedness (PHEP) program since the development of the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) Extranet in 2003. Our experts work with federal agencies and national preparedness organizations by providing the following services:

  • Federal, state and local Emergency Operations Center (EOC) support
  • Healthcare system surge drills
  • Mass fatality drills
  • Operational guidance during emergencies
Emergency room personnel rapidly moving a patient on a gurney

ORAU supports development of CDC’s Community Planning Framework

Community Planning Framework for Healthcare PreparednessORAU developed the Community Planning Framework for Healthcare Preparedness for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC’s) Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response (OPHPR) Healthcare Preparedness and Response Team (HPRT).

The Community Planning Framework for Healthcare Preparedness is a tool for community planners to use to enhance existing community plans for medical surge or to develop new plans from the beginning.

The Framework can help communities address the Hospital Preparedness Program (HPP) and Public Health Emergency Preparedness (PHEP) capabilities. 

ORAU provided technical writing, stakeholder coordination, and web design and architecture to develop this healthcare preparedness product.

Our Experts

Freddy Gray

Freddy Gray, M.P.H., MCHES

Expertise: Public health and healthcare preparedness, medical countermeasures, team dynamics, strategic planning

Gray has more than 25 years of experience managing and supervising public health and healthcare system preparedness and response programs involving medical countermeasures to help mitigate the surge of patients due to a public health emergency.

Certification: Master Certified Health Education Specialist

Will Artley

Will Artley

Expertise: Document design and development, technical writing and editing, emergency response exercise design and information synthesis


  • “Supply Chain Disaster Preparedness Manual,” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), December 2017
  • “Pandemic Influenza Electronic Exercise Tool,” CDC, September 2017
  • “How to Develop Medical Surge Planning Workshops,” CDC, June 2017
Kara Stephens

Kara Stephens, M.P.H., M.S.A., CHES

Expertise: Public health emergency preparedness program (PHEP) management, health communication and education, social marketing, social media

Stephens has more than 12 years of experience leading national health communication and education initiatives in support of the nation’s health security efforts.

Certification: Certified Health Education Specialist, ThinkTank Certified Facilitator, Adobe Illustrator and Indesign Certified Expert

  • Come talk to us about public health and healthcare preparedness capabilities

    Come talk to us about public health and healthcare preparednes at the ORAU booth at the 2019 NACCHO Preparedness Summit March 26-29, 2019 in St. Louis.

    The Preparedness Summit is the first and longest running national conference on public health preparedness. The Summit convenes a wide array of partners; presenting new research findings, sharing tools and resources and providing a variety of opportunities for attendees to learn how to implement model practices that enhance the nation’s capabilities to prepare for, respond to and recover from disasters and other emergencies.

Contact us

For information about ORAU’s health communication, preparedness and response needs, contact Marcus Weseman, M.P.A., vice president and senior associate director, Health Communication programs, at 865.576.3420 or