Article Out Loud – Dungeons and Disasters: Gamification of Public Health Responses

Full article by Michael Etzel and Michael Prasad, an Article Out Loud from Domestic Preparedness, April 10, 2024.

In this featured article, two emergency managers describe how advanced technologies are offering new ways to train personnel, exercise public health responses like COVID-19, and prepare response agencies for many other threats and hazards. Gamification integrates realistic scenarios in a controlled environment that can enhance community capabilities and build interagency collaboration and coordination.

Listen to expert insights on this innovative training and exercise tool that can change how professionals prepare for public health and other disaster responses.

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Michael Etzel

Michael Etzel is an Associate Emergency Manager and an Emergency Management Specialist Trainee with the Nassau County (NY) Office of Emergency Management (NCOEM). Michael is primarily assigned to the office’s planning section, where he coordinates planning projects, assists in training and exercise development, and serves as the NCOEM liaison to the Nassau County Fire Commission’s Emergency Management Committee. A graduate from St. John’s University with a B.S. and M.P.S. in homeland security, Michael is currently pursuing a doctoral degree. His research interests include domestic violent extremism, community resiliency, and emergency management theory.

Michael Prasad
Michael Prasad

Michael Prasad is a Certified Emergency Manager®, a senior research analyst at Barton Dunant – Emergency Management Training and Consulting (, and the executive director of the Center for Emergency Management Intelligence Research ( Mr. Prasad has held emergency management director-level positions at the State of New Jersey and the American Red Cross, serving in leadership positions on more than 25 disaster response operations, including Superstorm Sandy’s response and recovery work. He researches and writes professionally on emergency management policies and procedures from a pracademic perspective. His first book, “Emergency Management Threats and Hazards: Water,” is scheduled for publication by Taylor & Francis/CRC Press in September 2024 – and will now have updates based on this water-related incident. He holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Ohio University and a Master of Arts degree in emergency and disaster management from American Public University. Views expressed do not necessarily represent the official position of any of these organizations.



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