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Learn About Presidential Policy Directive-8: National Preparedness

This page provides updates, an overview, and information on the implementation of the directive to assist all communities and levels of government ensure we're prepared as a nation. The intended audience for this section is individuals, families, communities, the private and nonprofit sectors, faith-based organizations and state, local, tribal and territorial governments.


Experience tells us that when the whole community comes together to tackle a challenge—and everyone plays a role—the end result is more effective.

Recognizing that preparedness is a shared responsibility, Presidential Policy Directive / PPD-8: National Preparedness was signed by the President on March 30, 2011.

At its core, PPD-8 requires the involvement of everyone—not just the government—in a systematic effort to keep the nation safe from harm and resilient when struck by hazards, such as natural disasters, acts of terrorism and pandemics.

This policy directive calls on federal departments and agencies to work with the whole community to develop a national preparedness goal and a series of frameworks and plans related to reaching the goal.

PPD-8 is organized around six elements. 


The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) / Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) coordinated the multi-agency PPD-8 effort with representatives from across the whole community. This ensured the policy directive reflects the needs of the whole community. Collaboration has taken place with individuals and families (including those with access and functional needs), businesses, faith-based and community groups, nonprofit organizations and representatives from all levels of government (federal, state, local, tribal and territorial).   

A focus on involving the whole community in PPD-8 activities is what makes this effort unique. Because when it comes to national preparedness, all of us have a role to play.

Major Elements of PPD-8

National Preparedness Goal

This document:

  • States the goal: “A secure and resilient nation with the capabilities required across the whole community to prevent, protect against, mitigate, respond to and recover from the threats and hazards that pose the greatest risk.”
  • Defines a series of national preparedness elements (called core capabilities) that we need to achieve the goal.
  • Emphasizes the need for the whole community to work together in a variety of ways and make the best use of resources.

Learn more by visiting the National Preparedness Goal page.

National Preparedness System

This document outlines the approach, resources and tools for achieving the National Preparedness Goal.

Learn more by visiting the National Preparedness System page.

National Preparedness Report

The National Preparedenss Report evaluates annual preparedness progress and challenges facing the whole community.

Learn more by visiting the National Preparedness Report page.

National Planning Frameworks

This milestone is a collection of five frameworks focused on each of the mission areas (Prevention, Protection, Mitigation, Response and Recovery). Note: The frameworks define how we will work together to best meet the needs of individuals, families, communities and states in their ongoing efforts to prevent, protect, mitigate, respond to and recover from any disaster event.

Learn more by visiting the National Planning Frameworks page.

Federal Interagency Operational Plans

These plans cover the federal government’s activities to deliver the core capabilities outlined in the five frameworks. These plans are intended to demonstrate how federal efforts can work together to support state and local plans. The federal plans will also describe:

  • Critical tasks and responsibilities, such as resource, staff and sourcing requirements.
  • Specific provisions for rapidly integrating resources and personnel.

These plans serve as the federal government’s concept of operations for each of the five mission areas.

Build and Sustain Preparedness

This ongoing milestone has four key elements:

  • A comprehensive campaign, including public outreach and community-based and private-sector programs
  • Federal preparedness efforts
  • Grants, technical assistance and other federal preparedness support
  • Research and development

The effort to build and sustain preparedness is ongoing and seeks to build on a range of existing activities. 


Last Updated: 
01/30/2020 - 11:12