TEXAS CITY, Texas -- A new $1 million grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will pay for emergency protective measures implemented at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston during Hurricane Ike, FEMA officials said Wednesday.
Responding to the hurricane, the center implemented its established emergency plan, which allows the facility to shelter more than 500 cancer patients in place during a wind or rain event. To care for the medically restricted patients and perform other disaster-specific duties, the center utilized 1,800 employees.
The $1,115,979 FEMA grant will pay for the eligible labor costs for this operation. Because the work was for protective measures taken during and immediately after the hurricane, FEMA is reimbursing the state for 100 percent of the costs.
"Our primary goal is to protect lives during a disaster event and the cancer center made considerable effort to do just that," said Federal Coordinating Officer Brad Harris. "FEMA grants for protective measures strongly support these activities."
Once FEMA pays the funds to the state of Texas, their management, including disbursement to local governments and organizations performing services, is the responsibility of the state. The obligated funds are a portion of more than $1 billion in total Public Assistance disaster funds sent to the state since September 2008.
"MD Anderson responded immediately to Texans in need during the storm," said State Coordinating Officer Joan Haun. "This federal grant provides welcome financial assistance to the center."
FEMA responds to all eligible requests for assistance through the Public Assistance program.? For more Public Assistance information by county, go to www.fema.gov/ike and click on the Disaster Statistics button.
Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY call 800-462-7585.
FEMA leads and supports the nation in a risk-based, comprehensive emergency management system of preparedness, protection, response, recovery, and mitigation, to reduce the loss of life and property and protect the nation from all hazards including natural disasters, acts of terrorism, and other man-made disaster.