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Preparedness is a research-based set of actions that are taken as precautionary measures in the face of potential disasters.[dubious ] Preparedness is an important quality in achieving goals and in avoiding and mitigating negative outcomes.

There are different types of preparedness, such as public health preparedness and local emergency preparedness or snow preparedness, but probably the most developed type is "disaster preparedness", defined by the United Nations as involving "forecasting and taking precautionary measures before an imminent threat when warnings are possible".[1] This includes not only natural disasters, but all kinds of severe damage caused in a relatively short period, including warfare.

Preparedness is a major phase of emergency management, and is particularly valued in areas of competition such as sport and military science. Methods of preparation include research, estimation, planning, resourcing, education, practicing, and rehearsing.

Organizations promoting preparedness[edit]

In Canada, the Center for Preparedness is a federally incorporated, not-for-profit organization that promotes preparedness. Various organizations around the world provide emergency kits and training.[2]

Preparedness as a whole community activity[edit]

In the United States, before Hurricane Katrina, preparedness was largely viewed as the responsibility of first responders and other emergency services. In the aftermath of Katrina, it became evident that first responders can and will become overwhelmed in a large-scale disaster; unable to effectively respond to the emergency. Individuals must themselves be prepared to handle disaster. The idea of whole community preparedness is "By working together, everyone can keep the nation safe from harm and resilient when struck by hazards, such as natural disasters, acts of terrorism, and pandemics." The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), individuals, families, businesses, faith-based and community groups, profitable groups, schools and academia, media outlets, and all levels of governments take a role in preparedness efforts. A disaster affects the whole community, so everyone must be ready, by making a plan, being informed, and taking action to mitigate the effects of future disasters.[editorializing]


In the United States, legislation such as the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Reauthorization Act, and the Public Response and Emergency Preparedness (PREP) Act were enacted to develop the emergency personnel, procedures, drills, and plans needed in the event of an emergency.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Kent, R. (1994). Disaster Preparedness. United Nations Disaster Management Training Program. p. 11.
  2. ^ Leibowitz, Brandon (2015-07-16). "Different Types of Emergency Survival Kits". More Prepared. Archived from the original on 2016-08-16. Retrieved 17 July 2015.
  3. ^ "H.R.307 - Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Reauthorization Act of 2013". United States Congress. Retrieved 10 April 2013.

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