Emergency Preparedness Surveys Conducted in Champaign County

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Champaign County- The Champaign-Urbana Public Health Department's Medical Reserve Corps was out walking door to door trying to determine how prepared residents of Champaign County are in case of an emergency. 

The Community Assessment for Public Health Emergency Response, or CASPER survey took place in neighborhoods across the county. Where volunteers went door to door asking residents to complete a survey that would help the health department determine the community's preparedness in case a disaster were to strike, "We are assessing their preparedness going door to door, just asking questions about their preparedness because this is a kind of study that helps us understand how prepared we are." said Jane Li, Emergency Preparedness Planner for the Champaign Urbana Public Health Department. 

It's a new concept in emergency management, one that the Illinois Department of Public Health would like to see statewide. "We are one of the first in the whole state to do this, so we hope do this right after a disaster and assist the county emergency management agency." said Li. 

The surveys are a chance for volunteers to see different parts of the county, and meet new people. "I figured it would be a great opportunity to get more involved with the community and definitely help with gathering data on the topic of emergency preparedness that we don't quite have much data on in the county" said Evelyn Zepeda, a volunteer and a Junior at University of Illinois. 

These surveys also serve as a reminder to residents to always be prepared. "The people we had an opportunity to take the survey thought it was a very useful way to gather data, and they thought the questions were relevant and important." said Zepeda. "I guess maybe it was nice for them to think a little bit in terms of what they might need or what they may need to have in action in case of an emergency." 

The data collected from the surveys will be available online later this fall. 

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