Thursday, October 03, 2019

Prepare now for power outages

By Pixsoonz, courtesy istockphoto
If you don’t prepare for power outages, you risk getting caught in the dark. Power outages happen at any time and you never know how long they’ll last.

You can start preparing for power outages by building a basic emergency preparedness kit. Never use candles to light your home! This should include a first-aid kit, a weather radio, flashlights, batteries and important medications. It could also have important documents for insurance, bank accounts and forms of identification.

You also need to have a stockpile of non-perishable food and water. Everyone in your home should have a three-day supply of food and water. And don’t forget to keep extra food and water on hand for your pets, too because they will need it! Don’t open the fridge or freezer, as letting in room-temperature air could hasten your food spoiling.

Power outages in very hot and very cold weather can be unpleasant, if not downright dangerous. In the case of extremely high or low temperatures, families should find an alternative and safe place to stay. Do not use gas stoves to heat your home. The gas buildup could suffocate you and you risk starting a fire.

It’s a wonderful feeling when the lights come back on. But, if you didn’t unplug appliances and computer, they could be damaged by the power surge. When the lights go out, protect your devices and appliances by unplugging them.

Learn more about what to do before, during and after a power outage with Get Ready

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Get Ready Mailbag: Should I worry about vaccines?

Welcome to another installment of the Get Ready Mailbag, when we take time to answer questions sent our way by readers like you! Have a question you want answered? Send an email to getready@apha.org.

My child just started school and is required to be up-to-date on vaccines. I’ve seen a lot of posts on social media lately warning of the dangers of vaccines. Should I be concerned?

We understand your concern. After all, we all want the best for our children. With so much information — and sometimes incorrect information — available today, it can be hard to know who to trust. The bottom line is: Vaccines are safe.

There is a 1 in a MILLION chance of getting a serious reaction to a vaccine. Vaccines are studied and constantly monitored by scientists to make sure they’re safe. You may have read that vaccines cause autism, but scientific studies have continually disproven this.

Vaccinating your child is critical to protecting them against dangerous, possibly deadly, diseases. These can include the flu, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, measles, mumps, rubella, polio, chickenpox, rotavirus, diphtheria, tetanus, pneumococcal disease and pertussis (also known as whooping cough).

Check out Get Ready's video on herd immunity:
 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HarcDwj03-0&t=5s
Getting their shots also helps protect their classmates, friends, relatives and others in the community. This is because vaccines work based on something called herd immunity. When enough people are vaccinated, the entire community is less likely to get sick. Researchers have found that for a very contagious disease, like measles, it takes 90-95 percent of the population to be vaccinated to protect the entire community.

We hope this information helps to put your mind at ease. You can find out what vaccines your child needs by speaking with their doctor. You can review CDC’s recommended Childhood Immunization Schedule. If your child has missed any vaccines, your healthcare provider can use the catch-up immunization schedule to get them back on track.

Remember: Vaccines aren’t just for kids. As a parent or caregiver, make sure you’re caught up on your shots too. That way you don’t pass along diseases to young children. You can find out more about by reviewing the CDCs adult immunization schedule.

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Get Ready Day: the perfect day for preparedness!


Get ready…Get set…Get ready some more…because it’s almost Get Ready Day at APHA!

This year we will be celebrating APHA’s Get Ready Day on Sept. 17! September is National Preparedness Month, which means it’s the perfect time to raise awareness of preparedness and make sure you’re ready for anything from hurricanes and tornadoes to mosquitoes and measles!

Whether you’re just getting started with preparedness or you’re a preparedness pro, you’ve been preparing all your life, here are a few basic tips and refreshers on how to be prepared for any emergency:



Preparing for emergencies is low-risk and high-reward! It can be quick, easy and cost-effective to do. And it could make a huge difference when a disaster strikes. Join us this year on Get Ready Day to start taking these easy steps to keep you, your family and your community safe and healthy in the face of disasters and other hazards.

We encourage you to help us promote preparedness and share information by posting any of our free fact sheets on your social media accounts using the #GetReadyDay hashtag, printing them for the office or campus bulletin boards or by hanging them around your community!

Get Ready fact sheets are available in English and Spanish. You can even add your organization’s logo!

We hope you’ll join our celebration on Sept. 17! Happy Get Ready Day!

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Being prepared for global health threats, even at home


With everything that’s going on in our daily lives, it can be hard to keep up with problems that are happening far away in the world. But the world is smaller than we think. In fact, it’s only one mosquito bite or bad flu season away from being over there to right here in our neighborhoods. 

Earlier this year, the World Health Organization came up with a list of the biggest threats to global health. All of the things on the list are important. But for those of us who are really into preparedness — like we are here at the Get Ready campaign — there are a few that stand out. 

First off, climate change. Climate change makes bad weather much worse. As it continues, you should be prepared for more severe weather. Hurricanes are already getting stronger every year. And as climate change continues to warm the planet, the range of disease-carrying mosquitoes will grow.

Next up: Pandemic flu. When it comes to the next flu pandemic, it’s just a matter of when. A pandemic is the worldwide spread of a new disease. We’ve already had a few flu pandemics that have spread quickly and caused a lot of deaths. The good news is that we can help prepare for flu pandemics.

Another thing public health folks are worried about? Other disease outbreaks. Ebola, Zika and dengue are some of the many infectious diseases threatening health around the world. Your risk of getting these diseases is low here in the U.S. But low chance isn’t zero chance, so you should be prepared. 

Speaking of big concerns, another is vaccinations. A growing number of people are hesitant or refusing to get vaccines for themselves and their kids. By ignoring science, preventable diseases like measles are threatening the health of children across the world, including the U.S. You can stand with science and learn about vaccines and why they are important.

To read more about the health challenges we’re facing globally, check out the full WHO list. 

Thursday, August 01, 2019

Which animals are the cutest? It’s your turn to vote!

APHA’s 2019 Get Ready Photo Contest isn’t over yet, and neither is the fun.

Our judges have chosen the 17 lucky photos that will be featured in APHA’s 2020 Get Ready Calendar, but now we’re giving you a chance to choose your favorites from the runners-up!

For our Cutest Choice Awards, we’ve created 10 polls with the contest photo submissions — featuring adorable cats, dogs, goats, horses and more — and YOU get to review them. Cast your vote on which furry or feathered friend looks “most playful” or has the “best smile” and our other fun categories.

The top vote-getters in each poll will get their chance in the spotlight, as we’ll be adding captions to the photos and sharing them on APHA social media.

If you submitted an animal photo to the contest, you’ll especially be interested in our polls, as your pic may be in here. If so, share the poll with your family and friends on Facebook and Twitter to drive up those votes.

Voting ends Tuesday, Aug. 20, at 5 p.m. ET, so don’t delay!