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Community Assessment for Public Health Emergency Response (CASPER): Role of the Epidemiologist. Health Studies Branch, National Center for Environmental Health. Division of Environmental Hazards and Health Effects. LCDR Sara J. Vagi , PhD U.S. Public Health Service. CASPER Definition.

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community assessment for public health emergency response casper role of the epidemiologist
Community Assessment for Public Health Emergency Response (CASPER):Role of the Epidemiologist

Health Studies Branch, National Center for Environmental Health

Division of Environmental Hazards and Health Effects

LCDR Sara J. Vagi, PhD

U.S. Public Health Service

casper definition
CASPER Definition
  • Epidemiologic technique designed to provide quickly and at low cost, household-basedinformation about an affected community’s needs after a disaster in a simple format to decision-makers.
critical post disaster needs
Critical Post-Disaster Needs
  • Water
  • Food
  • Shelter
  • Sanitation
  • Medicine
  • Solid Waste
  • Electric Power
  • Heat
  • Transportation
  • Communication
goals of casper
Goals of CASPER
  • Determine the general and health needs of the community
  • Produce population- based estimates for decision-makers
  • Inform response efforts and planning for future disasters
casper methodology
CASPER Methodology
  • Multi-stage probability sample
    • 30 clusters (census blocks)
    • 7 households
  • Questionnaire development
  • Household-interview
  • Data weighted to obtain population estimates
  • Report generated within a day or two of data collection
  • Report shared with partners in response and recovery efforts
use of casper
Use of CASPER
  • Man-Made
    • Deepwater Horizon Gulf Coast Oil Spill, 2010
  • Hurricanes
    • Hurricane Ike, Galveston, TX, 2008
    • Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans, 2005
    • Hurricanes Charley & Ivan, Florida, 2004
    • Hurricane Isabel, North Carolina, 2003
    • Hurricane Andrew, Florida and Louisiana, 1992
  • Earthquakes/Tsunamis
    • American Samoa, 2009
    • Izmit, Turkey, 1998
  • Ice storms
    • Kentucky, 2009
    • Maine, 1998
  • Volcanic activity
    • Mexico, 1998
casper phases
CASPER phases
  • Prepare for the CASPER
    • Determine objectives
    • Determine assessment area
    • Develop questions and create questionnaires
  • Conduct the CASPER
    • Select sample
    • Organize and train assessment teams
    • Conduct household interviews
  • Analyze the data
    • Determine sampling weight
    • Calculate weighted frequencies and percentages
  • Write the report and share results
slide8
The role of the epidemiologist is to bring sound epidemiologic principles and practices into all phases of the CASPER!
the preparation phase
The Preparation Phase
  • Prepare for the CASPER
    • Determine objectives
      • Not always the role of the epi
      • But epi must see that the appropriate tool is being used to meet the objectives
    • Determine assessment area
      • How do we define the “affected” or “exposed”?
      • Assumption: All households in sampling frame are similarly affected
    • Develop questions and create questionnaires
      • Household-based
      • Action-oriented data
the preparation phase1
The Preparation Phase
  • Prepare for the CASPER
    • Determine objectives
      • Not always the role of the epi
      • But epi must see that the appropriate tool is being used to meet the objectives
    • Determine assessment area
      • How do we define the “affected” or “exposed”?
      • Assumption: All households in sampling frame are similarly affected
    • Develop questions and create questionnaires
      • Household-based
      • Action-oriented data
      • Pilot
conducting the survey
Conducting the survey
  • Conduct the CASPER
    • Select sample
      • Obtaining an adequate sample size (n=210)
      • Avoiding the convenience sample
    • Organize and train assessment teams
    • Conduct household interviews
      • Reducing interviewer bias
  • Balancing the ideal with the real world situation
final phases
Final phases
  • Analyze the data
    • Determine sampling weight
    • Calculate weighted frequencies and percentages
  • Write the report
    • This begins in the preparation phase
    • Know your data and its limitations
conclusions
Conclusions
  • Planning early for later steps
    • “Start with your table shells!”
  • Maintaining sound epidemiology
  • Balancing the ideal with the real-world situation
thank you
Thank you

National Center for Environmental Health

Division of Environmental Hazards and Health Effects