Report gives Arkansas score of 7 out of 10 in emergency preparedness

LITTLE ROCK (Arkansas News Bureau) -- A report evaluating states' preparedness for public health emergencies has given Arkansas a score of 7 on a scale of 1 to 10.

The report by the Trust for America's Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, released Wednesday, gave a score of 8 to five states; a 7 to 10 states; a 6 to 15 states; a 5 to 13 states and the District of Columbia; a 4 to five states; and a 3 to two states. No state received a 9 or 10 score.

Scores were based on 10 indicators. Arkansas was credited with satisfying the following seven: Ability to notify and assemble public health personnel quickly; requiring Medicaid to cover flu shots with no co-pay for people under 65; requiring child-care facilities to have a written evacuation and relocation plan; having accreditation from the Emergency Management Accreditation Program; participating in a Nurse Licensure Compact; having enough staffing capacity to work five 12-hour days for six to eight weeks in response to an infectious disease outbreak; and increasing or maintaining the chemical capability of the state's public health laboratory.

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