natural disasters

See the following -

How Health IT Benefits From Obama's Re-election

Ken Terry | InformationWeek | November 8, 2012

The day after President Obama was re-elected and Democrats held onto control of the U.S. Senate, the future looked bright to folks in the health IT field. Read More »

How Technology Can Help Mitigate Hurricane Harvey-Like Disasters

John Breeden II | Next Gov | September 5, 2017

Unfortunately, we don’t yet have technology that can prevent a storm of the magnitude of Hurricane Harvey from devastating our cities and towns. But it can help in the response, and even provide valuable information for citizens trying to survive a catastrophic event. One key is properly locating backup and recovery systems for government agencies. Typically, most cities and towns with a backup plan for their data rely on nearby data centers. That’s fine if there is a fire at the local office building or something that forces the temporary closure of government buildings...

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Hurricane Irma Just Made a Digital Walkie-Talkie the No. 1 App Online

Peter Holley | Houston Chronicle | September 6, 2017

As Hurricane Harvey dropped anchor over Southeast Texas last week, Zello became the go-to app for rescuers working to save thousands of people trapped by floodwaters. Within days of Harvey's arrival, the app saw a 20-fold increase in usage in Houston, according to Bill Moore, the Austin based startup's the chief executive. As Hurricane Irma hurtles across the Caribbean toward the coast of Florida, Zello continues to boom in popularity. The free Internet "walkie-talkie" app - which relies on cellphone data plans or WiFi and is designed to operate in places where signals are weak - became the top app on iTunes and Google Play Wednesday...

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IBM Announces Additional $25 Million Investment to Develop Open Source Tech for Disaster Response

Press Release | IBM Think | February 12, 2019

IBM today announced Code and Response, a new $25 million, four-year deployment initiative to put open source technologies developed as part of coding challenges such as Call for Code in the communities where they are needed most. Code and Response includes resources to build, fortify, test, and implement solutions at scale. The initiative is supported by hundreds of IBMers as part of the IBM Corporate Service Corps, as well as government and NGO partners to put those technologies to work saving lives.

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IBM Commits $30 Million Towards Open Source Disaster Response Tech

Press Release | IBM, David Clark Cause | May 24, 2018

IBM and partners today launched the Call for Code Global Initiative, the largest and most ambitious effort to bring startup, academic and enterprise developers together to solve one of the most pressing societal issues of our time: preventing, responding to and recovering from natural disasters. During a keynote address at the VivaTech Conference in Paris, IBM Chairman, President and CEO Ginni Rometty called on the technology industry to help build a better future, committing IBM technology and $30 million USD over five years in the annual Call for Code Global Initiative. Its goal is to unite the world's developers and tap into data and AI, blockchain, cloud and IoT technologies to address social challenges.

Improved Routine Access To Health Data Ensures Disaster Preparedness

Molly Bernhart Walker | FierceGovernmentIT | October 8, 2012

State health information exchanges can best prepare for emergencies by ensuring that health information is readily accessible during routine care, concludes a report (.pdf) from the Southeast Regional HIT-HIE Collaboration published in July. But the report finds day-to-day health information sharing is a challenge, as individual state's efforts and HIE implementation timelines vary considerably. Read More »

In Disasters Such as Hurricanes, HIE Is 'As Critical as Having Roads, as Having Fire Hydrants'

Mike Miliard | Healthcare IT News | October 31, 2012

The Statewide Health Information Network of New York (SHIN-NY) sees itself as a "public utility" as much as an HIE. In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, as patients bounce between hospitals (and as other public utilities, such as electricity and transportation, are compromised), it has enabled critical continuity of care. The images of dozens of red-flashing ambulances, evacuating as many as 200 patients – some of them in critical condition, some of them infants – from NYU Langone Medical Center, whose backup generator had failed, to hospitals such as Sloan-Kettering and NewYork-Presbyterian, will be some of the most enduring images from the super storm. The harrowing process was made much smoother by the fact that those patients' electronic health records were secure and readily accessible at the hospitals to which they were thanks to New York's statewide HIE... Read More »

In Hurricane’s Wake, Decisions Not To Evacuate Hospitals Raise Questions

Sheri Fink | ProPublica | November 1, 2012

Now, in the late evening hours, the worst-case scenario was unfolding at the main campus of NYU's Langone Medical Center in Manhattan, which had lost much of its backup power at the height of the storm. Could North Shore-LIJ dispatch ambulances from its Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City to pick up four critically ill babies from the neo-natal intensive care unit? New York City hospital and nursing home patients and their loved ones might reasonably have believed they were safe as Hurricane Sandy approached. Mayor Michael Bloomberg had exempted hospitals and nursing homes in low-lying "Zone A" areas of the city from his pre-storm evacuation order. Much thought and planning had gone into the decision to "shelter in place."

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Innovation At VA: App Offered To Hurricane Sandy Victims

Judi Hasson | AOL Government | November 7, 2012

A mobile app originally developed to aid veterans has been offered to mental health personnel helping Hurricane Sandy's victims, an example of how innovation and technology within the federal government can have a broader reach than ever before. Read More »

Installing Solar to Combat National Security Risks in the Power Grid

Press Release | Michigan Technological University | May 8, 2017

Vulnerabilities in the power grid are one of the most prevalent national security threats. The technical community has called for building up the resiliency of the grid using distributed energy and microgrids for stabilization. Power production from multiple sources increases the difficulty of triggering cascading blackouts, and following an attack or natural disaster, microgrids can provide localized energy security...

International Meeting Of Crowdsource Mapping Successfully Concluded

Press Release | UN-SPIDER, United Nations (UN) | December 6, 2012

On 5 December 2012, UN-SPIDER concluded a three-day international expert meeting on the topic of Crowdsource Mapping for Disaster Risk Management and Emergency Response. Read More »

Introducing CrisisNET

Chris R. Albon | Ushahidi | June 9, 2014

At Ushahidi, we love helping people turn data into social impact. We’ve helped thousands of users gather and manage crowdsourced data during everything from natural disasters to political revolutions. When Ushahidi was founded in 2008, our tools provided a rare and valuable source of crisis-relevant data to citizens, policy makers, and responders. Since then, we’ve watched the volume and variety of crisis data go from a trickle to a flood. Read More »

Is the US Finally Ready to Get Serious About Biodefense?

Biological and other disaster threats - whether accidental, driven by forces of nature, or intentional - pose fairly grave risks to the United States and the world. Situational awareness has been a conspicuous topic ever since the 9/11 attacks and the anthrax scare that followed shortly thereafter. Since then we have experienced numerous disasters: health impacts of major weather events such as hurricanes and earthquakes, new virus outbreaks like Ebola in Africa, raging wildfires on the West Coast (I live in California), and the ever-present threat of pandemic flu which a hundred years ago infected some 500 million people across the globe and killed an estimated 50 million people worldwide, according to the Center for Disease Control and Preparedness (CDC). But since the initial flurry of public health preparedness funds in the ensuing several years after the 9/11 attacks, this topic has not had a high priority at CDC nor the funding necessary to implement it successfully.

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Is This The Best Humanity Can Do For The Philippines?

Conor Friedersdorf | The Atlantic | November 11, 2013

Now that a storm, perhaps the most powerful in recorded history, has struck the Philippines, with winds gusting to 170 mph, a storm surge exceeding 20 feet, and an estimated 10,000 people dead; now that bodies are piling up in such quantities that local officials are digging mass graves [...]; now the world is rushing to send help... Read More »

Juliana Rotich Maps The Future With Ushahidi #designindaba

Herman Manson | Marklives.com | February 27, 2014

Juliana Rotich, a speaker at Design Indaba 2014, has a remarkable eye. Show her a map of undersea broadband cables connecting to Africa, and she points out that they still follow the sea routes that helped make Africa a continent of colonies not so many decades ago. Read More »