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A Special Needs Populations Assessment Toolkit

A Special Needs Populations Assessment Toolkit represents part of a pandemic influenza mapping and outreach project conducted by the Kansas Association of Local Health Departments. The toolkit contains a selection of materials that are clearly and concisely written. It provides detailed assessments for needs experienced by the elderly; disabled; non-English speakers; and people who live in shelters, institutional facilities, and other specialized housing. The purpose of each tool is defined, and instructions are given for its use. The household surveys query families with vulnerable members about medical needs, disability status, and general preparedness requirements. The agency needs assessment asks organizations in the community about the populations they serve, communication mechanisms, and preparedness status. The well-organized and thoughtfully developed tools could easily be used by other agencies, and they may be especially useful for county planning efforts. This toolkit may be quite useful as agencies identify the populations on whom they need to focus their efforts.