Disaster Preparedness for Practices

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Children have physical, mental, behavioral, developmental, communication, therapeutic, and social needs that need to be addressed in all aspects of disaster preparedness, response, and recovery. Pediatricians play a key role in preparing and treating families before and after Texas disasters. While the COVID-19 pandemic has consumed our daily lives, we cannot lose sight of the fact that Texas is a state prone to natural disasters, and hurricane season is upon us. TPS has curated a list of resources for pediatricians and parents to assist in mitigating the negative impacts of disasters on practices and families.

Recent News and Updates

TPS One-Page Practice Preparedness Checklist

Preparing Your Practice

Hurricane Safety Resources (including vaccine, medical device, and vaccine storage information) - FDA
9-Step Disaster Checklist - TMA 

Vaccine Storage and Handling

Vaccine Storage and Handling - AAP
Vaccine Storage and Handling Toolkit - CDC

Health Concerns Related to Natural Disasters:

Diarrhea Guidelines after a Disaster - CDC
Flood Water after a Disaster or Emergency - CDC
Leptospirosis Yellow Book Chapter - CDC

Mental Health Resources:

General Mental Health Resources:
Disaster Preparedness, Response, and Recovery - SAMHSA
Disaster Distress Helpline - SAMHSA
SAMHSA Disaster Mobile App
Behavioral Health Treatment Services Locator - SAMHSA

Mental Health Resources for First Responders:
Tips for Health Care Practitioners and Responders: Helping Survivors Cope with Grief After a Disaster or Traumatic Event - SAMHSA
Adjusting to Life at Home: Tips for Families of Returning Disaster Responders - SAMHSA 

Supporting Child Mental Health (Resources for Pediatricians):
Helping Children Cope and Adjust - AAP

Educational Materials to Share:
PSAs for Disaster and Severe Weather (use search tool)
Video PSAs for Caring for Children in a Disaster
Educational Flyers: General Info Materials for Children

Resources for Families:

Family Readiness Kit- AAP 

Safety and Basic Needs:
For road closures across Texas, click here
Texas Dept. of Public Safety Tips: Severe Weather & Flooding | Summer HeatWinter
Call 9-1-1 for life-threatening, emergency situations.
2-1-1 (Texas Resource Navigation)

Mental Health:
How Families Can Cope with Relocation Stress After a Disaster – Healthy Children
Responding to Children's Emotional Needs During Times of Crisis- Healthy Children 
Hurricanes & Floods: Taking Care of Your Children and Yourself – Healthy Children
Helping Children Cope with a Disaster - CDC
Talking to Children about Disasters – Healthy Children (Spanish)
Disaster Distress Helpline - SAMHSA
SAMHSA Disaster Mobile App
Behavioral Health Treatment Services Locator - SAMHSA

Resources for Children with Special Healthcare Needs

Texas Emergency Resources:

Texas Department of Emergency Management Plan Guidelines and Toolkits: This page includes information about and tools for emergency preparation. 

Keeping Children Warm When the Power Goes Out - Healthy Children
Crowd-sourced document for Winter Storm (cannot verify accuracy) with area-specific resources and general resources.

NPR: 'A Disaster Within A Disaster': Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Cases Are Surging In Texas (Feb 18, 2021)

Price Gouging:
If you witnessed or believe that you were a victim of price gouging during this storm, file a consumer complaint with the Office of the Attorney General. These items include: groceries, toilet articles, restaurant/cafeteria meals, medicine, pharmaceutical/medical equipment, hotel/motel rooms, gas/diesel, and propane.

Road Safety:
DriveTexas.org, from the Texas Department of Transportation, provides some of the most accurate and up-to-date travel-related information currently available to drivers in Texas. The information presented here is as close to real-time as possible.

Water Safety:
All of Texas has warnings in effect about boiling water. Check local alerts and recommendations. For information on how to sanitize water safely if you don't have electricity to boil it, visit the CDC website.


The Texas Pediatric Society has identified several volunteer links and opportunities to help those impacted by natural disasters. Please see below:

  • American Red Cross - sign up here
  • National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (NVOAD) - There are many types of VOAD organizations for you to assist. The site has a  member list of community-based, faith-based, and other types of non-profit groups in your community that have active disaster programs and need volunteers. Sign up to volunteer here
  • Texas Disaster Volunteer Registry for Medical, Public Health, and Lay Volunteer Responders - Run by the Texas Department of State Health Services. Texas physicians can sign up with the registry as a volunteer to provide medical help to Texas communities during or after a disaster. Learn more here.
  • US Department of Health and Human Services Webpage - Volunteer page includes links to additional registries to help in future disasters. Register here