The creation of a continuity of operations plan (COOP) by organizations is widely recognized as a key element of disaster preparedness and disaster response strategies and has been an accepted part of the emergency preparedness landscape since 1955. In 2009, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) issued Continuity Guidance Circular 1 (CGC 1) as a means of reducing the content variability of COOPs developed by non-Federal entities. FEMA’s CGC 1 does not offer an effective means of translating the content guidance into practical information gathering and presentation. The South Central Center for Public Health Preparedness (SCCPHP) assisted the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) to develop a template for COOP development conforming to CGC 1 to meet the needs of Alabama state agencies. The State of Alabama COOP Template has two parts: 1) a set of work sheets to be completed by the COOP Team and 2) the document shell into which completed work sheets will be inserted. The template consists of 22 work sheets designed for preparing for all-hazards, some of the work sheets have special considerations for responses to emergencies with significant worker absenteeism, such as influenza pandemics, and those that affect access to facilities and transportation resources, such as hurricanes, floods, and acts of terrorism.
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