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Call for Papers

Reimagining US Public Health Preparedness With Lessons From COVID-19

A Health Security Open Access Supplement

Brought to you by 2022 Preparedness Summit Planning Committee and the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security

Submission Deadline: All manuscripts should be submitted for consideration by January 17, 2023, to All submissions will be subject to a rigorous peer review. We encourage submissions of original research articles, case studies, and commentaries.

In April 2022, the 2022 Preparedness Summit, the largest annual meeting of the governmental and academic public health preparedness workforce, held a series of 8 COVID-19-specific listening sessions to better understand the experiences of the US public health workforce during the COVID-19 pandemic and to discuss lessons learned related to each session’s theme. The goal of these sessions was to share knowledge that could inform future planning efforts, policy development, and national health security strategy efforts.

The aim of the Reimagining US Preparedness supplement is to extend these conversations beyond the walls of the summit and to contribute to a growing body of knowledge about the pandemic and its impact of public health preparedness. Potential authors are encouraged to submit manuscripts that consider how the COVID-19 pandemic is transforming public health preparedness policy and practice and discuss what public health preparedness needs to look like in the future.

Manuscripts should focus on research on or discussions of 1 or more of these 8 themes:

  • Emergency Preparedness and Response – This might include current and next steps related to emergency preparedness and response foundational capability, such as (1) developing, collaborating, exercising, and maintaining preparedness and response strategies and plans; (2) coordinating and collaborating with federal, state, and local emergency managers and other first responders within the incident management system; (3) establishing and promoting basic ongoing community readiness, resilience, and preparedness; and (4) being notified of and responding to events on a 24-hour-a-day/7-day-a-week basis.
  • Partnerships – This might include current and next steps related to effective partnerships during the COVID-19 response, such as (1) creating, convening, and supporting strategic partnerships; (2) maintaining trust with and engaging community residents at the grassroots level; and (3) leading internal and external stakeholders to consensus. Special attention can be paid to partnerships promoting health equity and social justice.
  • Mitigation Strategies – This might include current and next steps related to investigating best practices related to conducting disease investigations and other mitigation strategies, such as (1) contact tracing and notification, (2) mask wearing, and (3) testing.
  • Communications – This might include COVID-19’s impact on the ability to effectively communicate with stakeholders, such as (1) maintaining ongoing relations with local and statewide media, (2) writing and implementing a routine communications plan or risk communication strategy that addresses inequity, (3) engaging communities and champions, and (4) developing and implementing a proactive health education/health prevention strategy.
  • Workforce – This might include current and next steps related to developing and maintaining a competent paid workforce, such as (1) recruitment, retention, and succession planning; (2) training; and (3) performance review and accountability.
  • Volunteerism – This might include current and next steps related to recruitment and retention of a competent volunteer workforce, including recruitment, retention, and training.
  • Organizational Administrative Preparedness, Including Public Health Authority and Leadership – This might include current and next steps related to (1) securing grants or other funding; (2) accessing and appropriately using legal services to plan, implement, and enforce public health; and (3) and serving as the public face of governmental public health in the department's jurisdiction.
  • Assessment and Surveillance – This might include current and next steps related to the assessment and surveillance of foundational capabilities, such as establishing where the public health preparedness profession stands in relation to: (1) collecting sufficient foundational data; (2) accessing, analyzing, and using data; (3) prioritizing and responding to data requests; (4) conducting community and statewide health assessments; and (5) accessing 24-hour-a-day/7-day-a-week laboratory resources capable of providing rapid detection.

Manuscripts that discuss the future of US public health preparedness and response systems post-COVID-19 are also welcome.

Please direct questions about the supplement to Beth Hess ( and any questions about the journal and the submission process to Kathleen Fox (

Health Security, published by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., is a bimonthly peer‐reviewed journal. It serves as an international forum for debate and exploration of the key strategic, scientific, and operational issues posed by biological weapons, pandemics and emerging infectious diseases, natural disasters, and other threats to global health. The journal provides multidisciplinary analyses and perspectives essential to the creation of strategies and programs that can diminish the consequences of health emergencies, epidemics, and disasters.

The journal’s international audience includes those professional communities that have strategic, scientific, or operational responsibilities critical to improving health security, including medicine, public health, law, national security, bioscientific research, agriculture, food safety, and drug and vaccine development.

Health Security is indexed in MEDLINE; PubMed; PubMed Central; Current Contents®/Social & Behavioral Sciences; Social Sciences Citation Index®; Social SciSearch®; Journal Citation Reports/Social Sciences Edition; EMBASE/Excerpta Medica; EMBiology; Scopus; ProQuest; CAB Abstracts; and Global Health.

Information for authors: The Reimagining US Public Health Preparedness With Lessons From COVID-19 supplement will be published in Health Security in 2023. Scholarly and review articles, descriptions of practice, case studies, and commentaries are welcome. Original article manuscripts should be about 4,000 words in length exclusive of the abstract, tables, figures, and references. Please consult the journal website for specific submission instructions (



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