Pacific EMPRINTS presents inaugural Pacific Preparedness Conference on January 16

University of Hawaiʻi
Posted: Jan 3, 2008

HONOLULU - The 2008 Pacific Preparedness Conference: Capacity Building to Address Vulnerable Populations will be held on January 16, 2008 at the Hilton Waikiki Prince Kuhio Hotel. This inaugural conference is presented by the Pacific Emergency Management, Preparedness, and Response Information Network and Training Services (Pacific EMPRINTS), a project administered by the College of Social Sciences' Department of Anthropology at University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. It is a skills-building conference designed to assist a wide range of health professionals, first responders, and emergency managers to better respond and prepare for the needs of vulnerable populations during a disaster. In honor of the event, Mayor Mufi Hannemann has declared January 16 as Emergency Preparedness Day for Vulnerable Populations.

The keynote address will be presented by Dr. Jeanette Takamura, former U.S. Assistant Secretary for Aging and the current Dean of Social Work at Columbia University on "Counting Upon the Kindness and Expertise of Others: Serving Vulnerable Individuals and Families Effectively in Times of Disasters." The luncheon speaker is Dr. Pierre Buekens, Dean of School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine at Tulane University on the important but not sufficiently addressed subject of "Disasters and Pregnancy." Other speakers include mainland and local experts.

The conference consists of four concurrent tracks culminating in a large tabletop exercise that incorporates the lessons learned from each of the following tracks:

In this track, local and national experts will address some of the numerous issues that arise when caring for vulnerable populations during an emergency. Vulnerable populations include a broad range of individuals who cannot comfortably or safely access and use the standard resources offered in disaster preparedness, relief, and recovery efforts.

This track offers practical solutions for effectively managing vulnerable populations during an emergency.

Mental health and cultural competence are salient issues when dealing with any population, and are essential when dealing with vulnerable populations. This track offers several approaches for building cultural competence in emergencies, presented by noted experts from various fields.

This track will consist of a mix of lectures and hands-on training that introduces participants to the use of mapping and geographic information system (GIS) tools to identify and protect vulnerable populations during an emergency event. Participants will use ArcGIS software and local data to prepare map products that will be used as part of the tabletop exercises held at the end of the day.

For a list of presenters, visit

Complimentary valet parking is provided and disability access needs and services are available upon request at the time of registration. A continental breakfast and buffet lunch are included in the price of registration.

Registration Fee: $135

To register, use the following link:

For further information, contact Ivy S. Takahashi at or at 956-9490.

About Pacific EMPRINTS
Pacific Emergency Management, Preparedness, and Response Information Network and Training Services (Pacific EMPRINTS) is a project within the College of Social Sciences' Department of Anthropology at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. It is a broad-based consortium of public and private health educators and health services providers that received funding from the U.S. Health and Human Services' Health Resources Services Administration (HRSA) in late 2005. The program was transferred to the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) in March 2007. It is one of only 19 continuing education grants awarded across the nation, including Yale New Haven Health System, University of California San Francisco and Columbia University.

The project envisions a cadre of health professionals better equipped to recognize terrorist and other public health emergencies, to meet the acute needs of their respective populations, to more easily coordinate responses to terrorist events, and to quickly and effectively communicate threats and response to the public at the community, state and national levels while enhancing the safety of both first responders and the communities they protect.

For more information, visit: