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About Public Health Emergency Preparedness

What is public health emergency preparedness?
Local public health agencies across the nation, including Cobb & Douglas Public Health (CDPH), must prepare to prevent, protect against, respond to, and recover from a wide range of threats. Examples include disasters, infectious disease outbreaks, bioterrorist attacks, or any other significant or catastrophic event that threatens individual or community health. At CDPH, this responsibility resides in our Center for Emergency Preparedness & Response (EPR).

How do public health agencies prepare?
Public health agency personnel regularly attend training and use the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)’s Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP) to design exercises that validate our emergency plans and identify opportunities to improve our capabilities.

Can I participate in public health emergency exercises?
Yes! Opportunities for volunteers are usually posted on our website and our official social media accounts on Twitter (@CDPHga) and Facebook (@CDPHga).

Can I volunteer to help in a real public health emergency?
Yes, there are several ways to become eligible to help in a public health emergency. Please choose whichever path works best for you:

  • Join the Medical Reserve Corps (MRC). A medical background is not necessary; click here to learn more about the MRC and how to volunteer.
  • Become a Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) member.
  • Sign up for the Georgia State Emergency Registry of Volunteers (SERVGA). A medical background is not necessary. Please go to and see their FAQ page for more information.

Can Cobb & Douglas Public Health speak to my organization about preparedness?
Absolutely! Contact Russell Goutierez ( to schedule.

What should I do if a real public health emergency occurs?
Click here for a comprehensive guide.