Public Health Surveillance Tools -- Hurricane

The risks to the public's health from a hurricane are several including direct and indirect impacts relative to injury, disease transmission, change in health-care access, reducing access to personal resources, and affecting mental health. The public health function of assessment and monitoring becomes more important when a hurricane makes landfall so that health departments may take or recommend action to prevent or reduce further negative impact. An enhanced surveillance effort is envisioned to capture data in the population that will use emergency evacuation shelters, those seeking care at hospitals and clinics, and finally fatalities that occur.

The surveillance tools described below were developed by a working group of the Texas Department of State Health Services. The purpose of these tools is to enhance surveillance immediately before, during, and for a time after a hurricane impacts Texas whether that impact is direct such as when a storm makes landfall on the Texas coast or indirectly when sheltering evacuees from a neighboring area.

They include:

General Shelter Surveillance Form – Instructions for Local and Regional Health Departments
General Shelter Surveillance Form
General Shelter Surveillance Situational Report
Disaster-related Mortality Surveillance 

We hope that you find these public health surveillance tools helpful.

Last updated January 10, 2012