November 21, 2023

Request for Proposals: “Addressing the Health Effects and Disproportionate Impacts of Extreme Temperatures through Whole Community Planning and Application of a Health Equity Lens”

Request for Proposals

PDF: Region 4AB PHEP Extreme Temperatures Health Action Planning RFP

Massachusetts Region 4AB Public Health Emergency Preparedness Coalition
Metro Regional Preparedness Coalition, Cambridge Health Alliance

Project Title
“Addressing the Health Effects and Disproportionate Impacts of Extreme Temperatures through Whole Community Planning and Application of a Health Equity Lens”

Overview
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) has divided the state into six regional Health and Medical Coordinating Coalitions (HMCCs) to enhance multidisciplinary health and medical collaboration and to support development of local and regional capabilities to respond to public health and healthcare emergencies. The Cambridge Health Alliance (CHA) serves as the fiscal and sponsoring organization for the Massachusetts Region 4AB HMCC, which includes the Region 4AB Public Health Coalition and serves 60 cities and towns in Metro Boston. The Region 4AB HMCC is formally known as the Metro Regional Preparedness Coalition (MRPC).

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the MDPH have entered into a five-year Public Health Emergency Preparedness (PHEP) Cooperative Agreement (2019-2024). The purpose of the Cooperative Agreement is to support state and local public health preparedness planning, training, exercises, and evaluation with a focus on developing public health emergency preparedness and response capabilities for a range of hazards. Through the Cooperative Agreement, the Region 4AB Public Health Coalition receives funding to support
these preparedness activities.

During Budget Period 5 (BP5; July 2023-June 2024), the PHEP grant funding deliverables prioritize whole community planning and the application of a health equity lens for the public health roles and responsibilities for mass care and emergency sheltering.

Project Background
In the first quarter of BP5, MRPC staff conducted a review of local hazard mitigation plans in the region to identify common hazards that could result in a mass care response for local public health departments. From this review, “extreme temperatures” and “extreme heat” were identified as hazards of interest for this project given their potential for negative health effects and disproportionate impacts.

The review of local hazard mitigation plans was also used to document proposed strategies for mitigating the effects of extreme temperatures and extreme heat events. The proposed community mitigation strategies were mostly found to be changes or improvements to local infrastructure (e.g., installation of a generator at a designated emergency shelter) or the environment (e.g., increase tree canopy in heat island areas). Less commonly found in local hazard mitigation plans was discussion of the health effects associated with extreme temperatures and extreme heat events and populations that are likely to be at higher risk or disproportionately impacted during these events.

The purpose of this project is to: 1) create detailed community profiles focused on the health effects and disproportionate impacts associated with extreme temperatures; 2) support local hazard mitigation efforts by documenting measures to mitigate the health effects of extreme temperatures and by evaluating the reach and effectiveness of those measures with disproportionately impacted populations; and 3) support local public health departments to develop health action plans for extreme temperature events. The community profiles will be used in the associated mitigation and action planning  components of this project.

Scope of Work
The Region 4AB Public Health Coalition requests proposals from qualified individuals and vendors to support the following scope of work.

1. Conduct a regional extreme temperatures health action planning survey. The selected vendor will develop and conduct a survey of communities in the region to determine the status of local planning for extreme temperature events. The purpose of the survey is to establish a baseline for extreme temperatures planning in the region and to identify planning needs for the associated health action planning project (described below). Examples of survey elements include, but are not limited to, local extreme temperatures action plans, heat vulnerability mapping, extreme temperatures health education, and designated warming/cooling centers. See “Resources” for more information about a heat-health action planning survey that was conducted nationally. The selected vendor will also analyze and summarize the survey data in a report and a presentation to the Public Health Coalition.

2. Identify, collect, and analyze community-level population data. The selected vendor will identify, collect, and analyze data on populations that are at higher risk of negative health effects associated with extreme temperatures and populations likely to be disproportionately impacted by extreme temperatures. Examples of populations of interest include, but are not limited to, older adults, people with disabilities, and people with chronic medical conditions. The selected vendor will also support heat vulnerability mapping using publicly available mapping tools or GIS tools. The selected vendor will summarize the population data in community profiles and a presentation to the Public Health Coalition.

3. Develop community profiles for reporting population data. The selected vendor will use the community-level population data to create community profiles that describe the health effects of extreme temperatures and provide a detailed description of local populations, including estimates of populations that are at higher risk of negative health outcomes and are likely to be disproportionately impacted. The vendor will work with MRPC staff to determine an appropriate format and reporting structure for the profiles. This may include up to 60 community profiles using a standard set of criteria.

4. Present to the Public Health Coalition on the project findings. In advance of the associated extreme temperatures health action planning project (described below), the selected vendor will present to the Public Health Coalition on population data related to extreme temperatures and on how to use the community profiles to inform extreme temperatures health action planning locally or regionally.

5. Conduct an extreme temperatures public health mitigation planning workshop. The selected vendor will conduct a workshop with local public health departments in the region to identify strategies to mitigate the health effects associated with extreme temperatures. The workshop will include training on extreme temperatures and the associated public health impacts, including information on higher risk and disproportionately impacted populations. The community profiles developed for this project will be used to facilitate discussion about higher risk and disproportionately impacted populations. The selected vendor will summarize findings from the public health mitigation planning workshop in a report which will serve as an addendum to the local Hazard Mitigation Plans.

6. Conduct a disproportionate impact mitigation planning workshop. As follow on to the public health mitigation workshop, the selected vendor will conduct a workshop with local public health departments and community partners representing at least one higher risk or disproportionately impacted population. The purpose of this workshop is to review the identified public health mitigation strategies and resources and evaluate the potential reach and effectiveness of those strategies with the higher risk or disproportionately impacted population(s). For strategies that may not reach the population(s), workshop participants will be asked to identify ways to expand the reach of the public health mitigation strategies. The vendor will summarize findings from the disproportionate impact mitigation planning workshop in the report described in Scope of Work item 5.

7. Develop a template Extreme Temperatures Health Action Plan. Based on model practice research and information gathered from the mitigation workshops (described above), the selected vendor will develop a customizable template Extreme Temperatures Health Action Plan. The template Action Plan will be used in an action planning workshop that will be facilitated by the vendor. Examples of plan elements include, but are not limited to, extreme temperatures monitoring, extreme temperatures health education, public information and warning, and warming/cooling centers.

8. Conduct an extreme temperatures health action planning workshop. The selected vendor will develop and conduct an extreme temperatures health action planning workshop with local health departments and community partners. The purpose of the workshop is to review the recommended elements of the template Action Plan and discuss strategies for customizing the plan. The vendor will develop a final project report that summarizes all project workshops, the workshop discussions, and actions taken.

Vendor Requirements
The individual or vendor submitting the project proposal should meet the following project standards and requirements.
● The vendor should have experience with population and health data collection, analysis, and reporting or the ability to subcontract with an individual or vendor with experience. This includes experience with mapping population characteristics. The vendor must have the ability to survey communities in the region by phone or using an internet-based survey tool.

● The vendor should have experience with whole community planning and development and maintenance of emergency operations plans or the ability to subcontract with an individual or vendor with experience. The vendor should have completed Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP) training.

● The vendor should have experience with the concepts of health equity and disproportionately impacted populations or the ability to subcontract with an individual or vendor with experience.

● The vendor should have experience with the concepts of mass care and emergency sheltering or the ability to subcontract with an individual or vendor with experience.

● The vendor should have the capability to facilitate meetings virtually (if needed).

● The vendor should have the ability to conduct in-person planning workshops.

● The vendor should be able to create all documents, spreadsheets, and presentations using Microsoft Office products.

● The vendor will coordinate with a Project Management Team (PMT) to advance the Scope of Work as outlined in the project contract. The PMT will include MRPC staff, including the regional PHEP Planners, and MDPH emergency preparedness staff. Representatives from the Public Health Coalition may be recruited to participate on the PMT.

Deliverables and Completion Dates
The following is an approximate timeline for the Scope of Work and is subject to change. Planning and implementation for the Scope of Work will be conducted concurrently and in consultation with the PMT. Specific deliverable deadlines will be established with the selected
vendor during the contracting process.

1. Project Launch Meeting
The selected vendor will participate in a virtual or in-person project launch meeting with the PMT within 7 business days of an executed contract. The purpose of this meeting will be to review the project purpose, goals, and deliverables, refine the project timeline, and further define and assign project roles and responsibilities. The selected individual or vendor will schedule weekly meetings for the duration of the contract to update the PMT on project deliverables.

2. Extreme Temperatures Health Action Planning Survey
The selected vendor will initiate development of the heat action planning survey within 7 business days of the project launch meeting. The PMT will review, provide feedback on, and approve the final survey tool. The selected vendor will initiate surveying communities within 14 business days of the project launch meeting. The PMT will periodically promote completion of the survey with communities in the region. Surveying of communities should be completed within three weeks of initiating the survey and the summary report should be completed 7 business days prior to presenting the findings to the Public Health Coalition.

3. Community Profiles
The selected vendor will initiate data collection for the community profiles within 14 business days of the project launch meeting. Data collection will focus on populations that are deemed at higher risk of negative health outcomes and likely to experience disproportionate impacts during extreme temperature events. The selected vendor will work with the PMT to determine populations at higher risk for negative health outcomes, disproportionate impacts associated with those outcomes, and populations likely to experience disproportionate impacts. When possible, mapping should be used to provide visual representation within the community profiles. As part of the data collection process, the selected vendor will develop a template community profile document (Microsoft Word) that can be used to report the data as either an individual community or regional profile. Community profiles should be finalized by 7 business days prior to presenting the findings to the Public Health Coalition.

4. Public Health Coalition Presentation
The selected vendor will conduct a presentation for the Public Health Coalition on the findings of the extreme temperatures health action planning survey and the community profiles. This presentation may be conducted at a coalition meeting or in conjunction with the public health mitigation planning workshop. The selected vendor will be responsible for developing the presentation slides (Microsoft PowerPoint) and any related handouts (Microsoft Office). The timeline for the presentation is TBD, but will occur prior to June 14, 2024 which is the deadline for all project deliverables.

5. Public Health and Disproportionate Impacts Mitigation Workshops
The selected vendor will initiate development of workshop materials for both mitigation planning workshops within 21 business days of the project launch meeting. Examples of workshop materials include, but are not limited to, flyers, agendas, sign-in sheets, workshop scenarios, workshop manuals, and discussion questions. The selected vendor will work with the PMT to identify dates, times, and locations (or virtual platform) for the mitigation workshops (likely to be held in March/April 2024). The selected individual or vendor is responsible for workshop registration, facilitation, and evaluation in the form of participant feedback and a summary report of all project workshops (see item 7 for the
completion dates for the summary report).

6. Extreme Temperatures Health Action Plan Template
The selected vendor will initiate development of the customizable template Action Plan (Microsoft Word) within 28 business days of the project launch meeting. A draft Action Plan will be submitted to the PMT for review and feedback. The selected vendor will have completed finalization of the Action Plan template 7 business days prior to the extreme temperatures health action planning workshop.

7. Extreme Temperatures Health Action Planning Workshop
The selected vendor will initiate development of the extreme temperatures health action planning workshop materials within 28 business days of the project launch meeting. Examples of workshop materials include, but are not limited to, flyers, agendas, sign-in sheets, workshop scenarios, workshop manuals, and discussion questions. The selected vendor will work with the PMT to identify date, time, and location (or virtual platform) for the planning workshop (likely to be held in April/May 2024). The selected vendor is responsible for workshop registration, facilitation, and evaluation in the form of participant feedback and a summary report of all project workshops. A draft summary report must be submitted to the PMT within 14 business days of the completion of the planning workshop. The PMT will complete its review and provide feedback within 7 business days of receipt. The final summary report must be returned to the PMT within 7 business days following their review.

Project Outputs
The following outputs are based on the project concept described in the RFP. Over the course of project development and implementation, the project outputs may be refined to reflect information collected or recommendations from the selected vendor, subject matter experts, or
PMT.

● Action Planning Survey. Outputs for the extreme temperatures action planning survey include: survey tool; completed survey of Coalition Communities; completed analysis of survey responses; identification of planning gaps based on survey analysis; survey report with recommendations; and presentation to Public Health Coalition on survey results.

● Community Profiles. Outputs for the extreme temperatures community profiles include: identification of higher risk and disproportionately impacted populations; identification of data sources for population groups; collection and analysis of population data for Coalition Communities; development of template community profile report; completed commuity profiles for Coalition Communities based on data analysis; and presentation to Public Health Coalition on population data and use of community profiles for health mitigation and action planning.

● Mitigation Planning Workshops. Outputs for the extreme temperatures mitigation planning workshops include: development of HSEEP-consistent health mitigation planning workshop materials; recruitment of public health and community partners participation in workshops; facilitation of workshops and collection of health mitigation strategies and lessons learned; development of health mitigation planning report; and presentation to Public Health Coalition on findings.

● Health Action Plan. Outputs for the template extreme temperatures health action plan include: development of customizable template health action plan based on model practice and information gathered from the survey and mitigation planning activities.

● Action Planning Workshop. Outputs for the extreme temperatures action planning workshop include: development of HSEEP-consistent health action planning workshop materials; recruitment of public health and stakeholders participation in the workshop; facilitation of workshop; development of health action planning report; presentation to Public Health Coalition on project outcomes.

Project Budget and Proposal Submission
The total contract is not to exceed $110,000.00, including all costs associated with staff time, venue (if applicable), travel, and production of materials. Project funding does allow for light refreshments at in-person workshops but cannot be used to cover lunch. The project and deliverables must be completed, and all invoices submitted, by June 14, 2024. The payment schedule is based on agreed upon terms to be specified in the project contract. Please submit a budget estimate and project proposal to: hmcc@challiance.org by 12:00 PM EST on Friday, December 8, 2023. Please include resumes for all individuals who will be involved in the work, a description of the business entity involved, and a detailed budget justification. The project proposal should include a draft schedule of outputs and completion dates which may be subject to change based on the contract start date.

Resources
The following resources provide guidance on key concepts and may provide the applicant with additional context needed for the successful completion of this project and the required outputs.

CDC Extreme Cold Information
https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/winter/guide.html
CDC Extreme Heat Information
https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/extremeheat/index.html
FEMA Extreme Cold Information
https://community.fema.gov/ProtectiveActions/s/article/Winter-Storm
FEMA Extreme Heat Information
https://community.fema.gov/ProtectiveActions/s/article/Extreme-Heat
National Integrated Heat Health Information System
https://www.heat.gov/
Survey of extreme heat public health preparedness plans and response activities in the most populous jurisdictions in the United States (including supplementary information)
https://bmcpublichealth.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12889-023-15757-x
Heat Response Plans: Summary of Evidence and Strategies for Collaboration and Implementation
https://www.cdc.gov/climateandhealth/docs/HeatResponsePlans_508.pdf
Capacity Building Toolkit for Including Aging and Disability Networks in Emergency Planning
https://www.naccho.org/uploads/downloadable-resources/NACCHO_Aging-and-Functional-Needs-
Planning-FINAL.pdf