Promoting Community Preparedness: Lessons Learned From the Implementation of a Chemical Disaster Tabletop Exercise

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Kay A. Lovelace, Associate Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:

Abstract: Health educators are frequently called on to facilitate community preparedness planning. One planning tool is community-wide tabletop exercises. Tabletop exercises can improve the preparedness of public health system agencies to address disaster by bringing together individuals representing organizations with different roles and perspectives in specific disasters. Thus, they have the opportunity to identify each other’s roles, capabilities, and limitations and to problem-solve about how to address the gaps and overlaps in a low-threat collaborative setting. In 2005, the North Carolina Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response developed a series of exercises to test the preparedness for chemical disasters in a metropolitan region in the southeastern United States. A tabletop exercise allowed agency heads to meet in an environment promoting inter- and intraagency public—private coordination and cooperation. The evaluation results reported here suggest ways in which any tabletop exercise can be enhanced through recruitment, planning, and implementation.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2010
health education, health educator roles, public health, public health preparedness, community preparedness, health promotion

Email this document to