PO Box 360
Trenton, NJ 08625-0360

For Release:
Thursday, September 1, 2016

Cathleen D. Bennett
Commissioner

For Further Information Contact:
Office of Communications
(609) 984-7160

New Jersey Department of Health Encourages Everyone to Get Prepared

September is National Emergency Preparedness Month

In recognition of September as National Emergency Preparedness Month, the New Jersey Department of Health encourages everyone to be prepared for the next emergency by taking steps to protect themselves and their families.

“We all know that the best time to prepare for an emergency is before it happens,” New Jersey Health Commissioner Cathleen Bennett said. “While no one can predict when an emergency will occur, there are steps everyone should take to be prepared. The Department encourages families to discuss plans well in advance of an emergency.” 

Mark your calendars to celebrate preparedness month with the Department. All month long, post a photo demonstrating how you prepare for an emergency using only six words to convey your preparedness plan. 1 photo, 6 words! Use hashtag #NJPrepares and tag the Department on Twitter and Facebook.

This year, the Department will be sponsoring a preparedness video contest. First place will go to the agency or group that produces the best preparedness video. Submissions will be accepted on the Department’s Twitter and Facebook pages until Sept. 23. There will be two, first-place winners chosen: one for public health and another for health facilities. Winning videos will be announced Sept. 30 and posted to the Department’s website.

The Department will also be partnering with the New Jersey Offices of Emergency Management and Homeland Security and Preparedness to host a Twitter chat on Sept. 30 — National PrepareAthon Day. Follow along using hashtag #NJPrepares and check the Department’s Twitter feed.

The Department of Health encourages everyone to:

  • Have an emergency kit
  • Make an emergency plan
  • Stay informed
  • Get involved

Have an emergency kit. Everyone should be prepared to have enough supplies for several days. Emergency kits should include the basics for survival including non-perishable food, water, at least a week’s worth of medication (both over-the-counter and prescription, if possible), flashlight, transistor radio, batteries, phone chargers, baby supplies and other special medical needs. For an extensive list of how to put a family emergency kit together, visit https://nj.gov/health/er/documents/kit.pdf.

Make an emergency plan. Families should have an emergency plan that includes the entire family and friends in case family members are separated when an emergency occurs. Plans should identify how to contact each other, where everyone will meet and what to do in various situations. An emergency plan should also include a comprehensive contact list that includes school and health care information as well as family information. Make sure this list is updated often as cell phone numbers may change.

Stay informed. Being prepared means staying informed. Use reliable sources for information, including the local or state health department or emergency management websites. Local newspapers, radio and television stations are also good sources for information during an emergency. Bookmark the Department of Health website as a favorite.

Get involved. Consider taking a first aid or emergency response course. Help make your community stronger by joining your local Medical Reserve Corp, which coordinates volunteer activities. Find out more about New Jersey’s Medical Reserve Corps.

The Department also created videos describing how families and individuals can prepare for any type of public health emergency.

Follow the New Jersey Department of Health on Twitter at twitter.com/NJDeptofHealth and on Facebook at facebook.com/NJDeptofHealth.

Last Reviewed: 8/31/2016