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Skip Navigation LinksPennsylvania Department of Health > Your Dept of Health > Offices and Bureaus > Bureaus > Bureau of Public Health Preparedness

About the Bureau of Public Health Preparedness


Andrew Pickett, Director




Lead the commonwealth in preventing, responding to and reducing the public health and medical consequences of emergencies and disasters.  




A commonwealth prepared to prevent, respond to and reduce the public health and medical consequences of emergencies and disasters.  


The Bureau of Public Health Preparedness (BPHP) is the coordinating office for public health preparedness, response, recovery and mitigation activities in the commonwealth.  BPHP functions as the Department of Health’s principle preparedness and response representative to all local, state and federal entities, as well as private organizations, such as hospitals and other healthcare entities.  BPHP coordinates preparedness and response planning, training and exercise development and manages the Department’s response and recovery activities to the public health and medical consequences of natural or man-made disasters and emergencies. 


About Us


The Bureau of Public Health Preparedness (BPHP) is responsible for providing direction, coordination and assessment of all activities that ensure state and local readiness, interagency collaboration and preparedness for the public health and medical consequences of all disasters and emergencies. The BPHP serves as the primary coordinating office within the Pennsylvania Department of Health and is charged with developing both internal and external processes to assure Pennsylvania ’s ability to respond in a coordinated manner, at all levels of decision-making, to public health threats. 


The BPHP oversees the implementation of Public Health Emergency Preparedness Cooperative Agreements from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  The BPHP ensures that there is a clear understanding and coordination of planning efforts across the grants and that there is no duplication of efforts or expenditures.  To that end, the BPHP has instituted a Project Investment Analysis process to ensure that grant funds and programs are administered according to grant requirements and consistent with commonwealth preparedness priorities. The BPHP ensures that state and local health departments, hospitals, and other health care entities are able to mount a unified, coordinated response with seamless interaction among all public health preparedness partners.


The BPHP manages the following major program initiatives:

  • Disaster Volunteer Recruitment and Retention – 
    State Emergency Registry of Volunteers in Pennsylvania (SERVPA)
  • Public Health Preparedness Education and Training (PA Prepared Learning Management System)
  • Statewide Medical Reserve Corps Coordination
  • Emergency Preparedness and Response Planning
  • Preparedness and Response Exercises, Evaluation and Lessons Learned
  • Special Populations Emergency Planning
  • Hospital and Healthsystem Preparedness
  • Public Health System Preparedness