Oklahoma gets high marks on CDC emergency readiness report

Oklahoma operates at a high level of readiness to face down emergencies like terrorist attacks and natural disasters, the Oklahoma State Department of Health said on Thursday.

Officials with the OSDH said they were pleased with Oklahoma's scores in a recent report released by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The 2013-2014 National Snapshot of Public Health Preparedness gave high marks to Oklahoma's emergency public information and warning system, laboratory response network, emergency operations coordination and ability to distribute critical assets during a large-scale public health emergency.

Critical assets required during an emergency include medical supplies, vaccines and medicine.

"The CDC report's snapshot for Oklahoma indicates the state operates at a high level of readiness to rapidly respond to and recover from a wide range of public health threats," Scott Sproat, the director of OSDH's Emergency Preparedness and Response Service, said. "We're pleased that our efforts to collaborate with local, state, tribal and federal public health agencies; the healthcare system; and emergency management organizations have resulted in a high level of readiness to safeguard Oklahoma communities. Our challenge now is to sustain this readiness."

The annual CDC report is meant to demonstrate that investments in state and federal resources to respond to public health threats and emergencies improve health security, help to prevent leading causes of illness, injury disability and death and strengthen the public's health.