Community Health Centers and Private Providers

Community Health Centers and private healthcare providers play an essential role in planning for and responding to a citywide public health emergency. Here you will find information, tools and resources to improve mitigation, response, and recovery during emergencies.

Primary Care Emergency Management Program

The Department of Health is launching a new program to provide Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) with free CMS Final Emergency Preparedness Rule Technical Assistance. The Primary Care Emergency Management Program is designed to help the city's FQHCs develop their emergency management capabilities in the following four areas, which are outlined by the CMS EP:

  • Risk assessment
  • Policies and procedures based on the plan
  • Communication plan compliance with State and Federal law
  • Training and testing (exercise) programs

This program will run for nine months (September 19, 2017–June 30, 2018), and you can sign up for it now. To enroll, email

Tools and Templates

PCEPN stands for the Primary Care Emergency Preparedness Network. It is a coalition of primary care providers within New York City dedicated to health care emergency response. The coalition is led by the Community Health Care Association of New York State, in partnership with the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and New York City Emergency Management. These educational materials have been created specifically for the primary care sector by the Primary Care Emergency Preparedness Network.

Hazard-Specific Plans

Toolkits and Guidance Documents

  • Business Continuity Planning Workshop
    Participants Materials (PDF): The purpose of this document is to provide worksheets/sample templates to help outpatient/primary care settings develop site specific business continuity plan, so that their institutions can continue to provide essential services during an emergency or disaster.
    Evaluation Materials (PDF): The purpose of this document is for providers to evaluate the effectiveness of business continuity workshops offered to outpatient/primary care settings and should be used in tandem with the Business Continuity Planning Workshop Participants’ Materials.
  • Primary Care Emergency Preparedness Community Integration Guide (PDF): This document provides information on how primary care centers can build partnership with community and healthcare sectors to build resilient communities post-disasters.
  • Development Planning and Compliance Checklist for FQHCs (PDF): Use this checklist as a guide to determine whether your health center's emergency management program contains all the required elements within the CMS EP final rule. For more information, visit the CMS website.
  • For more information, view the tools in the Infectious Disease Readiness section on our Hospitals page.

Additional Community Health Center resources developed by other healthcare organizations:

  • Emergency Preparedness Plans and Tools
    Greater New York Hospital Association (GNYHA) has prepared this guide to facilitate emergency preparedness and response activities by health care providers and their communities. The guide outlines a number of the key plans, tools, and other resources available to support health care providers' planning and response activities.
  • Emergency Preparedness Toolkit for Community Health Centers and Community Practice Sites
    This toolkit, created by the Center for Health Policy and the New York Consortium for Emergency Preparedness Continuing Education (Columbia University School of Nursing), is intended to be used by leadership of community practices to assess vulnerability, create an emergency preparedness plan, train staff on the plan, and evaluate staff's readiness through participation in drills and exercises as well as connect with local emergency planners.
  • Special Initiative for Rebuilding and Resiliency (SIRR)
    Created to build a more resilient New York City in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. Below are two key recommendations for health care providers:
    • Encourage Electronic Health Record-Keeping
      Providers rely on patients' medical records to provide and track care. However, these important records may be compromised or destroyed due to flooding. EHRs can help prevent permanent loss of data and allow for quick restoration of services after a disaster. The DOHMH Primary Care Information Project (PCIP) seeks to improve population health through health information technology and data exchange. The program supports the adoption and use of Electronic Health Records (EHRs) among primary care providers in New York City's underserved communities and area specialist through a wide- range of services.
    • Telecommunications Strategy
      In some cases, patients' needs can be addressed over the phone when in-person care is not possible. Some examples of this could be for prescription refills, maintenance of chronic conditions, and other questions regarding basic health and safety. Having a back-up phone service allows a provider to offer a basic level of care during and shortly after an emergency that causes facilities to be closed. Some best practices for establishing telecommunications resiliency include directing incoming calls to off-site phones and planning for emergency operations to handle redirected call volume and providing appropriate care. Some options to assist with the creation of a resiliency plan include:
      • Option A: Work with a primary phone provider to redirect patients' calls to alternate phone numbers during emergencies
      • Option B: Work with a call answering service to answer calls from patients and connect the provider to the collected information from patients
      • Option C: Purchase Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone service that plugs into any available internet connection. You may be able to obtain a VoIP device from your existing phone/internet vendor.
  • Plan Template: Abbreviated Pandemic Influenza Plan Template for Primary Care Provider Offices.

Presentations, Webinars and Reports


New York State Primary Care Association and Non-Profit Organizations

Additional Resources

Learn more about Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, Explosive, Cyber/Power, Extreme Weather, and Pandemic Threats.