The practice community meets the ivory tower: A health department/academic partnership to improve Public Health Preparedness

Judith R. Covich, Cindy L Parker, Vanessa A. White

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


When the local health department of Montgomery County, Maryland, was chosen to participate in Project Public Health Ready and was charged with the daunting task of providing a comprehensive emergency preparedness plan, training all 600 employees to carry out that plan, and conducting exercises to demonstrate the department's competency, it realized it couldn't do it alone. The department sought the assistance of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. The first challenge for these unlikely partners, one a bastion of research and the other firmly immersed in the practice world of public health, was to figure out how to work together. This article describes the development of their partnership; outlines the preparedness plan, training, and exercises that resulted from the partnership; summarizes the challenges and benefits for each entity; and enumerates lessons learned that could be useful to other public health entities planning to undertake similar partnerships.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)84-90
Number of pages7
JournalPublic Health Reports
Issue numberSUPLL. 1
Publication statusPublished - 2005


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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