CDEI Emergency Management Roadmap

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The goal of the AVMA’s Emergency Management Program is to encourage and foster veterinary leadership and guidance in local, state and federal efforts within the United States in preparation for: disasters and emergencies involving animals, animal and public health, and other veterinary issues.


The objective of this program is to advocate for appropriate support for all veterinary aspects of disaster and emergency situations within the United States.


The AVMA staff, with oversight and input by the Committee on Disaster and Emergency Issues, is responsible for the coordination of information and people in order to advance all animals/all hazards emergency preparedness and response. The scope of the staff's work includes supporting policy development, education and outreach (including compilation and distribution of educational materials), and routine communication with membership and external customers. The Committee on Disaster and Emergency Issues is responsible for recommendations to the AVMA Board of Directors concerning strategic guidance and fiscal and policy oversight.

Program Components


  • Educate practitioners and their support staff and clients, emergency managers, state veterinary associations, and veterinary students on appropriate preparedness and mitigation measures
  • In cooperation with animal stakeholders, deliver biosecurity education to practitioners and materials for their clients


  • Provide education on Foreign Animal Disease (FAD) awareness and reporting protocols to membership and other relevant stakeholders
  • Support efforts nationally to enhance the food safety, zoonotic disease and animal disease surveillance systems



  • Support national coalitions of animal health emergency management stakeholders to provide a world-class animal emergency management system
  • Coordinate with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to rapidly identify and communicate with practitioners willing to serve in animal emergency situations
  • Assist Federal, state, tribal, and local agencies in streamlining animal health resource utilization through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC) or other mutual aid agreements
  • Assist Federal, state, tribal, and local agencies in ensuring that animal health, food safety, and zoonotic disease issues are included in the National Planning Frameworks and associated documents as well as state-level emergency operations plans
  • Support infrastructure for response and recovery to all animals - all hazards incidents, no matter the scope across all jurisdictions
  • Foster One Health cooperation with counterparts in human medicine,  veterinary medicine, and the environment
  • Represent the membership in applicable national animal emergency and disaster planning and response committees and meetings
  • Continue to maintain and update the AVMA Disaster Preparedness Series
  • Support legislative efforts for government preparedness for animal emergencies and for funding of research relating to animals in disasters
  • Support the development of standards for essential information needs for national foreign animal disease events
  • Support the development and maintenance of euthanasia, mass depopulation, and carcass disposal guidelines


  • Communicate proactively with other animal welfare stakeholders to coordinate resource allocation, and create appropriate memoranda of understanding regarding emergency response efforts
  • Disseminate information about:
    • National National Alliance of State Animal & Agricultural Emergency Programs (NASAAEP)
    • National Animal Rescue and Sheltering Coalition (NARSC)
    • National Veterinary Response Team (NVRT)
    • USDA-APHIS National Animal Health Emergency Response Corps (NAHERC)
    • State, tribal, and local veterinary response organizations
    • Other opportunities for veterinarians in the emergency response system
  • Anticipate public affairs and social media requirements during emergencies by preparing informational responses for likely scenarios, and coordinate their review by subject matter experts


  • Provide assistance to the veterinary community and the local communities following a disaster
  • Assist public and private sectors in communications with veterinarians during emergency response and recovery efforts
  • Provide educational material to members and stakeholders during an incident
  • Work with the incident public information officer to provide information through appropriate media to the public during a real or perceived incident
  • Support appropriate after action reviews, recommendations, and education on how to improve mitigation, prevention, protection, recovery, and response efforts