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Animal Health Emergency

Video Cover - Animal Resources and EMACIn cooperation with The Humane Society of the United States and the International Fund for Animal Welfare, NEMA EMAC Senior Advisor Leon Shaifer introduced EMAC “basics,” provided historical examples of animal response under EMAC, noted lessons learned through these response events, and reinforced the need for pre-event preparation using resource typing and Mission Ready Packages on the part of animal response personnel.

View the 47-minute webinar recording.

  • NIMS - Animal Health Emergency
  • Preparing for a Mission
  • Animal Health MRP Models

altActions for Animal Health Resource Providers:

  • Work through national organizations toward standardization with job titles, skills, and abilities.
  • If possible, type the available resources using NIMS Resource Typing.
  • Package your resources (typed or untyped) into Mission Ready Packages (MRPs).  Use the animal health guidelines to get started.

    Learn more about Mission Ready Packages and view guidelines that will help you when starting to develop your response-specific MRP.



If you need help building a Mission Ready Package for animal health, the MRP models will help you get started.

altTo understand the relationship between the models and the response-specific Mission Ready Package, watch this short video.

Download a Mission Ready Package template

MRPs should be built in coordination with your home state emergency management agency (EMA).  Do not build an MRP unless your state EMA has authorized your resource as a deployable asset. 

  • May individuals from different states make up one animal health response team? +

    Yes, animal health response teams may be made up of individuals from multiple states.  To achieve this, each Assisting State's emergency management agency must receive a request from the Requesting State's emergency management agency asking for the "piece" of the team. 

    Then the Requesting State emergency management agency must complete the REQ-A (the document that, upon completion, constitutes a legally binding agreement) with each Assisting State emergency management agency. 

    Once the mission documentation is completed, the team may deploy.  To expedite this type of situation, pre-planning with the state emergency agencies and having a Mission Ready Package completed (minus the travel information and number of days) will expedite the request and the deployment.

  • Must resource providers type resources to the NIMS Resource Typing Type I standards? +

    NIMS Resource Typing DefinitionsIf there is a national standard, we request that resource providers use those standards.  However, all resources—even those that are not resource typed—are important and should not be overlooked as a valuable response tool.  The Mission Ready Package allows for both typed and untyped teams. 

    The current list of Animal Health Emergency Type I Resource Typing Definitions was completed in May 2005. 

  • Does EMAC law or a state licensing board determine if licenses are accepted in a state? +

    EMAC Articles of AgreementYou should check with your home state attorney general for a definitive answer.  In general, EMAC is state law.  In most cases, a licensing board does not supersede state law.

    To avoid the issues encountered in licensing, it is strongly encouraged to use simple language descriptions of resource requests and resource offers. 

  • Do tort immunity and liability provisions in EMAC law also cover service animals? +

    Search-and-rescue dogTo answer this question, consider a search-and-rescue dog as an example. The dog is equivalent to a tool that the officer or employee brings into the jurisdiction to perform his or her work.  As long as the employee or officer in charge of the dog is acting in good faith and not engaged with or through the dog in willful misconduct, gross negligence, or recklessness, then the employee would be protected under the liability provision. 

    After all, a dog may not be sued for willful misconduct; rather, the dog's trainer would be the one who is sued. This is similar to a lumberjack's having to ensure that a chainsaw is reasonably kept away from a child.  If the lumberjack hands the chainsaw to the child to play with, that would be considered gross negligence, and the lumberjack would be responsible for the consequences.  The same could be said for a trainer who  doesn’t take reasonable efforts to protect the public from the dog. 

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