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October 26, 2012

Poll Found Americans are Unprepared for Disasters

Adelphi University created the Adelphi University Center for Health Innovation Poll (AU CHI Poll) to gauge public awareness and opinion on critical and pressing public health concerns.  As the country, especially those of us in the northeast with fresh memories of Hurricane Irene, braces for the potential devastating impact of Hurricane Sandy, we wanted to share the results of the inaugural poll to help encourage personal preparedness in advance of the storm.

According to our recent nationwide survey of adults, the Adelphi University Center for Health Innovation Poll found that 84% of Americans don’t think it’s very likely they will be affected by a disaster. Really?  The Poll further found that 44% of the respondents don’t have first aid kits, that they believe they can survive an average of 16 days if forced to remain in their homes during a disaster, but over half (53%) didn’t have a 3-day supply of nonperishable food and water stored at home. 55% thought the authorities will look after them in case of a disaster. The AU CHI Poll demonstrates that this sense of security is unrealistic and it could have tragic circumstances.

Other highlights from the Poll include:

Americans Are Not Focusing on the Most Important Item—Their Health

  • 63% don’t have a list of their current medications
  • More than half (52%) of Americans have not prepared copies of crucial health insurance documents in case of a disaster

Americans Don’t Have a Disaster Kit—A Flashlight Isn’t Enough

  • 48% don’t have emergency supplies
  • Americans believe they can survive an average of 16 days if forced to remain in their homes during a disaster. However, over half (53%) of Americans don’t have a 3-day supply of nonperishable food and water stored at home. 

Parents Are Not Ready for Disaster

  • 80% of parents agree their family is well prepared for a disaster, but this sense of security is unrealistic
  • 52% of parents don’t have a designated meeting place if separated from family

When Disaster Strikes at Work

  • 21% of working Americans go to work each day without knowledge of a workplace emergency preparedness plan
  • Two in five (42%) Americans don’t know all their immediate family members’ phone numbers

Americans Aren’t Receiving the Information They Need to Survive

  • Less than one in five (18%) have received information on healthcare preparedness.
  • 55% of Americans believe that local authorities will take care of them and their families during a disaster

We urge you to act upon the poll’s findings and use the time ahead of the storm to prepare yourself and your family.  To assist you, here are some important resources from

The inaugural Adelphi University Center for Health Innovation Poll was designed to gauge the opinion of Americans on emergency preparedness, seeks to play an important role in alerting people to the dangers of not planning for the unexpected and offer solutions/tips for making an incredibly difficult situation easier.  Click here to view the Poll.

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About Adelphi: A modern metropolitan university with a personalized approach to higher learning

Adelphi University, New York, is a highly awarded, nationally ranked, powerfully connected doctoral research university dedicated to transforming students’ lives through small classes with world-class faculty, hands-on learning and innovative ways to support academic and career success. Adelphi offers exceptional liberal arts and sciences programs and professional training, with particular strength in our Core Four—Arts and Humanities, STEM and Social Sciences, the Business and Education Professions, and Health and Wellness.

Recognized as a Best College by U.S. News & World Report, Adelphi is Long Island’s oldest private coeducational university. It serves almost 8,000 students at its beautiful main campus in Garden City, New York—just 23 miles from New York City’s cultural and internship opportunities—and at dynamic learning hubs in Manhattan, the Hudson Valley and Suffolk County, as well as online. 

More than 116,000 Adelphi graduates have gained the skills to thrive professionally as active, engaged citizens, making their mark on the University, their communities and the world.

For further information, please contact:

Todd Wilson
Strategic Communications Director 
p – 516.237.8634
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