Staff from the OR&R Disaster Preparedness Program Develop Interim COVID-19 After Action Report for NOAA
March 8, 2021 — At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the NOAA Homeland Security Program Office (HSPO) stood up an After Action Reporting/Lessons Learned Unit led by Katie Krushinski and Charles Grisafi from the Office of Response and Restoration’s Disaster Preparedness Program (DPP).
The purpose of the Unit is to capture lessons learned and memorialize new processes to improve the efficacy throughout NOAA’s COVID-19 response.
Working through the HSPO After Action Reporting/Lessons Learned Unit, Katie and Charles led an effort to develop an Interim COVID-19 After Action Report (ARR) that spans from the beginning of the pandemic through June 30, 2020, when NOAA reintegration efforts began. The interim AAR document is a culmination of the feedback each NOAA line and staff office provided to the COVID-19 After Action Reporting/Lessons Learned Unit throughout that time.
The interim AAR comprises various sections including background, which provides information and a timeline of events, and Lessons Learned provided in narrative form that outlines the areas in which NOAA staff felt there were gaps or needed improvements. In addition, the AAR document includes an Improvement Plan designed to take the lessons learned a step further providing information on how the gaps were either remedied or where they currently are in that process.
The DPP staff dedicated to this effort will continue to lead the After Action Reporting/Lessons Learned Unit throughout the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic. As NOAA line and staff offices continue to encounter situations that are impacted by COVID-19, they are encouraged to share that information with the After Action Reporting/Lessons Learned Unit through the appropriate reporting tools. These should include instances occurring from July 1, 2020 through the present.