COVID-19 Disaster Plan Templates

Freely available to any organization, the COVID-19 disaster plan templates below were created by 30 students from schools across NYU including Medicine, Nursing, Public Service, Social Work and Global Public Health.

Enrolled in GPH’s Emergency Preparedness for Healthcare Organizations, these students created guidelines for any healthcare organization -- including hospitals, nursing homes, and community clinics -- working to write or update their COVID-19 disaster plans (a JCAHO and CNS requirement).

Many of the students in this dynamic class are already employed on the front lines as MDs, RNs and NPs, so they could offer first-hand insights that bring best practices to life, making these plans not only authentic but also highly applicable.

These plans meet an unfulfilled need in the field, while enabling students to add a preprint publication to their already impressive curricula vitae.


In Fall 2020, students enrolled in Management of Public Health Disasters at NYU School of Global Public Health worked together in small teams to prepare COVID-19 Disaster Plan templates for local and international entities. The result of their efforts is posted here with the hope that these Disaster Plan templates may be helpful to other organizations that are preparing or revising their COVID-19 Disaster plans. The following plans are part of an assignment and the names of institutions are used as an example. They may or may not reflect the actual work of the institutions mentioned.

I AM GPH EP90 Emergency Preparedness with Noor Jamal, Stephanie Parchment, and Cesar Figueroa

In the summer of 2020, Dr. Robyn Gershon, Clinical Professor of Epidemiology taught the highly popular GPH course, Emergency Preparedness for Healthcare Organizations. Against the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic, three Master of Public Health students, Noor Jamal, Stephanie Parchment, and Cesar Figueroa enrolled in this timely and relevant course. Dr. Gershon’s high energy, dynamic course equips students with disaster management skills for the current healthcare domain, even providing students the chance to strategize solutions for disaster plans, healthcare guidelines, and more in collaborative teams. In this episode, Noor, Stephanie, and Cesar share their thoughts on the importance of emergency preparedness, how the United States has been managing the outbreak of COVID-19, and what this field looks like moving forward, armed with insight and wealth of knowledge gained from the course.

Subscribe now on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts.


NYU’s School of Global Public Health is home to many dynamic labs where you can immerse yourself in the public health topics that matter most to you – and to the world. Faculty in the Department of Epidemiology direct or facilitate the Complex Public Health Disasters (CPHD) Lab, the Urban Epidemiology Lab (UEL), and the Agent-Based Modeling (ABM) Lab.

Agent-Based Modeling Lab (Drs. Joshua Epstein and Erez Hatna)

Director: Dr. Joshua Epstein, PhD
Associate Director: Dr. Erez Hatna, PhD

The Agent-Based Modeling Lab is NYU’s hub for research, courses, real-world applications, seminars, events, and projects on Agent-Based Modeling in public health and the social and behavioral sciences.

Agent-Based Modeling has been recognized as a “Transformative Innovation” by NIH, and has matured scientifically to the point that NYU is offering Undergraduate and Graduate curricula and a Certificate Program in this burgeoning field. The Lab is the hub for this unique and visionary NYU Initiative. To ensure that it encompasses the entire University, Epstein holds affiliated appointments in the Tandon School of Engineering, the School of Arts and Sciences, and the Courant Institute for Mathematical Sciences. All of these Schools are represented on the Advisory Board of the LAB, as is the Santa Fe Institute, where Epstein is an External Professor.

The essential mission of the Lab and its affiliates is to advance interdisciplinary science, deepening the theoretical foundations, and expanding the humane applications, of agent-based modeling and complementary areas of mathematics across the social, behavioral, and health sciences.

For more information, please contact

Complex Public Health Disasters (CPHD) Lab (Dr. Robyn Gershon)

Faculty Facilitators: Dr. Robyn Gershon, MHS, DrPH and Dr. Alexis Merdjanoff, PhD

Two facts are clear regarding disaster events: (1) they are increasing in frequency and severity and (2) all large scale disasters are public health disasters. The increased intensity of disasters, coupled with the increased interconnectedness and complexity of critical mass infrastructure, is driving the need for highly skilled emergency managers. In recognition of the demand for public health professionals with advanced training in disaster management, GPH recently launched a new Advanced Certificate in Public Health Disaster Science, Policy and Practice. 

This new Public Health Disasters Lab builds upon the momentum of the new Disaster Certificate Program and leverages the research of two GPH faculty members who are actively conducting public health disaster studies. The aim of the new Lab is to conduct cutting edge and applied research to meet the needs of (1) the public health and health care sector; (2) minimize risk and increase resilience in vulnerable populations, including, disabled, aged, marginalized and minority populations; and (3) improve our public health disasters preparedness capabilities in order to protect essential workers.

Current projects in the CPHD Lab include: Impact of COVID on NYC Transit Workers; Role of American with Disabilities Coordinators (ADA-C) and Offices of Emergency Management (OEM) on emergency management policies and practices for people with disabilities; Impact of multiple complex disaster events (WTC Disaster, Hurricane Sandy, and COVID-19) on disaster survivors; long term impact (across the lifespan) of the WTC attack on survivors, and other studies. The Lab includes MPH students who are working on thesis projects, applied practice projects or those with interest in gaining experience with publications and presentations. A new GPH Public Health Disaster Journal and webpage has recently been launched to provide a forum for students interested in publishing some of their disaster-related work. Opportunities for gaining experience in managing and further developing the new Journal are also available to students affiliated with this new Lab.

Interested students should contact Dr. Robyn Gershon at to discuss lab membership

Urban Epidemiology Lab (UEL) (Drs. Danielle C Ompad and Emily Goldmann)

Faculty Facilitators: Dr. Danielle C Ompad, PhD, MHS and Dr. Emily Goldmann, PhD, MPH

In 2007, the world achieved a major milestone: 50% of the world’s population was living in urban settings and the proportion of people living in urban settings is expected to increase to 68% by 2050 (United Nations, World Urbanization Prospects: The 2018 Revision.) Given this reality, the Urban Epidemiology Lab (UEL) primarily engages in research that aims to: (1) understand and improve the health of people living in urban settings and (2) help us conceptualize urban settings as “exposures” that may improve or detract from the health of urban dwellers.

The UEL’s primary focus is on substance use, mental health, and infectious diseases such as HIV, Hepatitis B and C, sexually transmitted infections, and malaria. The UEL includes undergraduate students, graduate students, and post-doctoral fellows from NYU and beyond. Opportunities exist for collaboration with other students, other NYU faculty, and faculty from outside of NYU.

For more information, please contact Dr. Danielle C Ompad at or Dr. Emily Goldmann at


The NYU GPH Journal of Public Health Disasters is the NYU School of Global Public Health’s first student-led public health journal. Graduate students post insightful posts about their disaster management plans, case studies, and holistic approaches to intervention plans. Our students' disaster projects invite incumbent conversations of global health challenges and large-scale disasters that affect the healthcare system, and share perspectives on the current disaster management paragon. The NYU GPH Journal of Public Health Disasters is a digital, free open-access journal. Our students’ outstanding plans and submissions may be downloaded and printed as full text articles.