Continuity of Operations Planning provides details on operational guidance in the event a facility is incapacitated and/or a percentage of personnel are unavailable or incapable of performing their essential functions. COOP planning is simply "good business practice" and essential for all reliable and responsible public organizations. Prior to the attacks in the United States of America on September 11, 2001, individual agencies and government departments were responsible for compartmentalized COOP planning, content, and format.

The changing nature of emergencies has highlighted the need for systematic COOP planning that sustains the organization's ability to implement COOP procedures across a broad range of emergent situations. Louisiana's historical disaster situations, such as those associated with Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, emphasize the need for planning for continuity of essential public health supports and services. In addition, the ability of OPH to quickly reorganize these essential public health supports and services within the context of a seamless transportable service delivery system that meets changing needs is an expansion of daily services provided to Louisianans.

This document reflects federal recommendations for improving planning for staffing resources, guidance such as that found in preparedness documentation, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency's COOP Self-Assessment Tool.