Promising Signal for Protecting Infrastructure

Promising Signal for Protecting Infrastructure

The recent National Security Memorandum on Critical Infrastructure Security and Resilience (NSM-22) signed by President Biden signals a strong commitment by the Biden-Harris administration to invest in cross-sector efforts to build a more resilient nation.

The decade-old policy replaced by NSM-22, Presidential Policy Directive (PPD-21) was the first cohesive policy to unify perspectives and to establish a national plan to strengthen the resilience of critical infrastructure — physical and virtual assets and systems so vital to the nation that that their incapacity or destruction would have a debilitating impact on national security, national economic security, or national public health or safety.

The emphasis on engaging sectors highlighted in NSM-22 is particularly significant for Healthcare Ready’s mission. Since our founding in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, we’ve worked closely with public sector entities at the federal and state levels, private sector health partners, and nonprofit organizations to communicate in ways that previously were unattainable in supporting critical healthcare infrastructure.

Effective disaster response hinges on seamless information sharing and coordination of these sectors, making cross-sector collaboration essential for maintaining community health and long-term recovery.

Healthcare Ready plays a pivotal role in preparedness and response by bridging the gap between public health and emergency management. By serving as a liaison with and across private sector stakeholders, we can enhance relationship-building with government agencies during normal times — giving all stakeholders the ability to act quickly and effectively when responding during a disaster. These relationships are increasingly important as many of the healthcare services in the U.S. are provided by the private sector.

In addition, Healthcare Ready will help meet the goals of NSM-22 through its work with Sector Risk Management Areas (SRMA) and the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) by serving as an important conduit.

Healthcare Ready crisis response collaboration focuses on four specific efforts:

  • Information-sharing and Situation Reports. Healthcare Ready publishes event-based situation reporting and threat analyses that are viewed by tens of thousands of emergency managers, private sector leaders, government officials, and frontline responders through the Alert Hub.
  • Direct Coordination. Healthcare Ready facilitates cross-sector collaborations during crises by leveraging relationships with public sector entities at the federal and state level, private sector health partners, and the nonprofit organizations active in disasters. One example is Healthcare Ready’s work as Secretariat for the ASPR Division for Critical Infrastructure Protection (CIP).
  • After-action Reporting and Assessments. Healthcare Ready guides organizations in assessing current and past responses to determine strengths and opportunities for improvement to enhance future crisis response and mitigation efforts.
  • Donation Management. Healthcare Ready connects suppliers to areas of need and manages getting supplies where they are needed to serve facilities and patients during and in the immediate aftermath of crises, outbreaks, and natural disasters.

Creating a resilient nation as envisioned by NSM-22 requires us to be committed to the extensive work that remains — which includes increased investment, especially in certain underfunded areas such as healthcare system readiness.

One of our greatest assets is our extensive network of public and private sector partners which empowers us to craft and amplify vital messaging. By joining our expanding member network you’ll play a crucial role in coordinating crisis responses, ensuring the safety and resilience of communities before, during, and after crises. Learn more about membership opportunities and benefits we offer on our website.

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