On September 10, 2017, Hurricane Irma made landfall as a Category 4 hurricane on Cudjoe Key, Florida, spawning 21 tornadoes along with storm surge, heavy
On September 10, 2017, Hurricane Irma made landfall as a Category 4 hurricane on Cudjoe Key, Florida, spawning 21 tornadoes along with storm surge, heavy rain, and high winds, causing extensive damage and claiming seven lives. Many homes were destroyed or uninhabitable. There were widespread power outages and significant impacts on natural habitats and agriculture. The president signed a major disaster declaration for Florida on September 10, 2017. Florida has 1,197 miles of coastline vulnerable to hurricanes. Recent notable storms included Hurricanes Charley (2004), Frances (2004), Ivan (2004), Jeanne (2004), Dennis (2005), and Wilma (2005). According to the National Hurricane Center, Hurricane Irma is the fifth-costliest hurricane to impact the United States to date, behind Hurricanes Katrina (2005), Harvey (2017), Maria (2017), and Sandy (2012). In the wake of the 2017 hurricane season, Congress passed three supplemental funding bills to aid recovery. After a major disaster, community organizations and local governments need to make complex recovery decisions in a compressed timeframe. The consequences of these initial decisions can impact the recovery outcomes in the near term, and a community’s preparedness, cohesion, and resilience far into the future. Directly after Hurricane Irma, state officials recognized the importance of developing an issue-based recovery strategy in advance of upcoming state budgetary decisions to ensure that support would be available to expedite critical recovery projects identified at the local level. The state had already implemented capacity-building recommendations and exercises after previous hurricanes and was well equipped to implement new tactics following Hurricane Irma. Numerous conversations with local partners and prior lessons learned prompted the State of Florida to request localized, community-based recovery support from federal subject matter experts (referred to as “place-based teams”). This was an innovative coordination practice that enabled the state to collaborate with county governments to utilize on-the-ground federal support to advance recovery. From a healthcare perspective, how would you describe this disaster or emergency case study?
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