For information related to Hurricane Sandy, please click here.
The devastation of Hurricane Katrina confirmed that disasters are unpredictable and extraordinary events. More extraordinary, however, was the degree to which the nation was not adequately prepared to recover from such a major catastrophe. This came as a painful shock to both citizens and some experts alike. To assist in ensuring that the nation is able to recover from events like Hurricane Katrina, the NCDP is focused on the: analysis of long-term recovery issues facing communities affected by disasters, and the critical individual and social factors associated with disaster resiliency; assisting the recovery of those affected by disaster through direct services and projects; and conducting longitudinal, community-based outcome studies in areas affected by major disasters.
In response to the urgent health and public health needs of the Gulf Coast region that resulted from Hurricane Katrina, the NCDP, in collaboration with the Children’s Health Fund, established Operation Assist. Operation Assist has provided urgently needed medical assistance and public health assessments via state-of-the-art Mobile Medical Units and rapid research capacities. Operation Assist is poised to meet the challenges that will persist well into the future of this devastated region, and since September 2005, has experienced over 19,000 medical and mental health visits in the devastated Gulf Coast Region.
Gulf Coast Child & Family Health Study (G-CAFH):
G-CAFH is a longitudinal cohort study of displacement, health, and recovery among
1,074 randomly sampled households displaced or greatly impacted by Hurricane
Katrina in Louisiana and Mississippi. Baseline interviews were conducted at 6
months post-Katrina in Louisiana and 12 months in Mississippi, and the first
follow-up round was conducted at 22 months in both states. Findings to date have
focused upon the physical and mental health effects, as well as the social and
economic consequences, of exposure to the disaster and the subsequent displacement.
One recent analysis applied cohort data to population figures to arrive at an
estimate of the numbers of children at increased risk because of health or education
deficits as a consequence of the hurricane. One mental health sub-study generated
from G-CAFH is an ongoing randomized case-control study of the efficacy of testimony
therapy in accelerating personal recovery among a disaster-impacted population.
Community Support and Resiliency:
The Community Support and Resiliency Program (CSRP) provides children and families
in the Gulf with critically needed mental health services in their affected communities.
CSRP mobile mental health units are specially designed to help our programs in
Gulfport/Biloxi, MS; New Orleans, LA and Baton Rouge, LA. The programs support
innovative services to help children and families cope with the ongoing aftermath
of this disaster including, a collaboration with an internationally recognized
organization to bring art therapy programs for children in post-disaster situations,
and the provision of specially designed "Coping Boxes" to children receiving
therapy as a tangible, therapeutic tool to help in their developmental and psychodynamic