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close this bookCommunity Emergency Preparedness: A Manual for Managers and Policy-Makers (WHO, 1999, 141 p.)
close this folderChapter 4 Emergency planning
View the documentIntroduction
View the documentAn emergency planning process
View the documentPlanning group review
View the documentPotential problem analysis
View the documentResource analysis
View the documentRoles and responsibilities
View the documentManagement structure
View the documentStrategies and systems
View the documentContent of community emergency plans
View the documentSummary
View the documentReferences

Planning group review

A planning group is essential to developing appropriate emergency plans.

“Well-prepared (emergency) plans specify what will be done, where, when, and by whom, to meet the specific demands of emergency conditions. Such plans can be developed only by representatives of operating departments and non-government groups with emergency missions. Paper plans prepared by the emergency program manager working alone, with little participation by operating departments, are of little value. In an actual emergency they will not be used. The development of a written plan, therefore, is not an end in itself. A written emergency plan does not guarantee that actual operations will be effective. But the process of planning that leads to the development of a written plan is extremely valuable. This is because the officials who are responsible for emergency operations have spent time determining which official will do what and how operations will be coordinated.” (3)

Some criteria for selecting members of a planning group follow. These people should be:

- aware of the emergency management roles of their organization;
- actively involved in preparedness, responses, or recovery;
- of sufficient seniority to commit their organization to planning group decisions;
- capable of contributing to the planning group’s work.

These criteria represent desirable attributes, but it is unlikely that every planning group member will fulfil them. The planning group should be small enough to be functional, and will generally include only one representative from each organization. The appropriateness of members of an existing planning group can be assessed in the same way.