When natural disasters strike, quickly getting the right aid to people is difficult at best. Doing so amid the worst pandemic in a century increases that challenge dramatically.
For thousands of Americans displaced this year by hurricanes, floods and wildfires — plus those trying to avoid COVID-19 — getting their drugs and medical supplies has been critical.
Healthcare Ready, a tiny disaster preparedness and response group, serves as a crucial hub for coordinating donations and shipments of medicines, protective gear and other supplies to those in need.
The Associated Press recently talked with its executive director, Nicolette Louissaint.
Q: What led to your group’s formation in 2005?
A: After Hurricane Katrina, there was a lot of frustration. Pharmaceutical companies knew they could do more to help but didn’t know how to get their medicines into shelters, because they didn’t have relationships with law enforcement, public health agencies or the Red