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October, 06, 2016

One of our goals at the Bureau of Family Health (BFH) is to keep families safe when disasters hit - like the August floods. Even if families planned ahead for disaster, many were surprised by the speed and severity of these floodwaters and many people were - and in some cases still are - displaced with scant resources.

BFH staff and partners worked diligently during and after the floods to help people in affected regions. Some key actions taken by BFH to keep families safe and healthy are listed below.

  • Over 40 BFH staff were deployed to flood-affected areas to help in Emergency Operations Centers, Medical Special Needs shelters, or general shelters. 
  • BFH staff and partners worked together to ensure that all infants in shelters had safe places to sleep. Displaced families were also provided information and resources to help them follow safe sleep guidelines while away from their homes.
  • BFH Home Visiting Program staff identified program participants that were in need of assistance, shared disaster assistance resources, and volunteered at disaster assistance sites. 
  • Reproductive Health Program staff helped people in flood-affected areas find health care facilities that were still able to provide services. Staff also helped people who had reproductive health services appointments scheduled during the floods reconnect with providers post-flood. 
  • The Partners for Healthy Babies help line, websiteFacebook and Twitter pages provided up-to-date information about and referrals to local and national resources for flood-affected families.

BFH is continually refining its disaster preparedness and response strategies. We will be using lessons learned during the August floods to prepare for and meet the needs of Louisiana families during future disasters.

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