Muddy Waters: The Legacy of Katrina and Rita

Muddy Waters: The Legacy of Katrina and Rita

It was six months after the mega-disaster in the Gulf caused by the two hurricanes … six months after the drowning of the Ninth Ward, the tsunami-force gales that raked the coast of Mississippi … An insightful group of people at the headquarters of the American Public Health Association wanted to capture the memories and heed the experience of their colleagues who had actually lived through it.

That was how I came to interview doctors, nurses, public health officials, a representative of the CDC Foundation and scores of others during the summer of 2006. We started working on the project in late June. They wanted it by September. I spent hours on the phone every day, talking to the health-care providers who had lived through the storms, and those who had volunteered to go to the Gulf while the Gulf states were still reeling. Dozens of health-care workers told me their stories. They cried. I cried, and they kept on talking and I kept on typing, for hours.

The subtitle of the book, Health Care Providers Remember – and Look Ahead,  is just one small reminder that THAT disaster is by no means over, and that it could happen again.  And we must not forget it.
Muddy Waters has won several awards since its publication. It’s available through the American Public Health Association, which is based in Washington, D.C. Go to , and look for “Books.” They’re alphabetical.

Find the book here.

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