Global & Disaster Medicine

Archive for the ‘Drills/exercises’ Category

The largest patient movement exercise in U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ history began 4/10/18 to test the nationwide ability to move patients with highly infectious diseases safely and securely to regional treatment centers.

HHS

HHS sponsors its largest exercise for moving patients with highly infectious diseases

The largest patient movement exercise in U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ history began today to test the nationwide ability to move patients with highly infectious diseases safely and securely to regional treatment centers.

“Saving lives during crises requires preparation and training,” explained HHS Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response Robert Kadlec, M.D. “A tremendous amount of coordination, synchronization, and skill is needed to move patients with highly infectious diseases safely. We have to protect the patients and the healthcare workers caring for those patients. This type of exercise helps ensure that everyone involved is ready for that level of complexity.”

Coordinated by the HHS Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, more than 50 organizations will participate, including the Department of State, Department of Transportation, the Regional Ebola Treatment Centers, local and state health and emergency management agencies, hospitals, airport authorities, and non-government organizations.

Throughout the exercise, participants react as if the incident is real. They must take the necessary actions and employ the appropriate resources to manage and protect the patients, the workforce and the environment and safely transport the patients.

The exercise focuses on moving seven people acting as patients with Ebola symptoms in different regions of the country. The patients, including one pediatric patient, first present themselves at one of the following healthcare facilities: CHI St. Luke’s Health-The Woodlands Hospital in The Woodlands, Texas; Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, South Carolina; Norman Regional Hospital in Norman, Oklahoma; St. Alphonsus Regional Medical Center in Boise, Idaho, and St. Luke’s Regional Medical Center in Boise, Idaho.

At each facility, healthcare workers will collect and ship samples for diagnostic tests to state laboratories, which in turn will practice running the necessary laboratory tests to diagnose the patients with Ebola. As part of the exercise, each patient will receive a positive diagnosis. Using appropriate isolation techniques and personal protective equipment, health care workers then must take steps to have six of the patients transported by air to designated Regional Ebola Treatment Centers. These patients will be placed into mobile biocontainment units for these flights. The pediatric patient will be placed into protective equipment and transported by ground ambulance.

The treatment centers that will receive the patients are Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, California; Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia; Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center in Spokane, Washington; and University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, Texas. The pediatric patient will be transported to Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus in Houston, Texas.

The participating airports are Boise Airport in Boise, Idaho; Charleston International Airport in Charleston, South Carolina; DeKalb-Peachtree Airport in Atlanta, Georgia; Ellington Field Airport in Houston, Texas; Los Angeles International Airport in Los Angeles, California; Spokane International Airport in Spokane, Washington; and Will Rogers World Airport in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Upon arrival, local emergency responders will transfer the patients to ground ambulances for transportation from the airports to the treatment centers.

HHS and the Department of State previously collaborated on exercises to move Americans acting as Ebola patients from West African countries to Ebola treatment centers in the United States. In public health emergencies or disasters, the U.S. government orchestrates the return of Americans to the United States, including Americans who are sick or injured.

This exercise runs through April 12. Participants will gather on April 13 to assess the exercise, compare actions across the country, and share best practices for moving patients with highly infectious diseases.

Note to editors: Video sound bites from Dr. Kadlec are available for download at https://www.dropbox.com/sh/ktvdv44y7z68ly7/AAAf2H_JzzY8i-tzREY6VfaAa?dl=0 exit disclaimer icon.


A training exercise video of the Manchester bombing, May 22, 2017


CDC: Disaster Preparedness for Expectant and New Parents as Maria storms in…….

CDC 

Preparedness for Expectant and New Parents

Illustration of pregnant woman with various preparation iconsDisasters, such as wildfires(https://www.cdc.gov/reproductivehealth/emergency/wildfires.htm), hurricanes(https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/hurricanes/index.html), and floods(https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/floods/index.html), can be unpredictable and devastating. In honor of National Preparedness Month, learn general tips to get prepared before a disaster and what to do in case of a disaster to help keep you and your family safe and healthy.

Get Prepared for an Emergency or Disaster

Disasters can be scary and stressful, especially if you’re expecting or have a baby. You can take the following steps now to help you prepare for an emergency and better cope if an emergency happens.

  • Talk to your doctor or other healthcare provider about—
    • What steps you should take in any emergency.
    • Where you will get prenatal care if your doctor’s office is closed.
    • Where you will deliver your baby if your hospital is closed.
  • Learn the signs of signs of preterm labor(https://www.cdc.gov/reproductivehealth/maternalinfanthealth/pretermbirth.htm#warning_signs) (labor before 37 weeks of pregnancy) and prepare emergency birth kit supplies.
  • Learn about your community’s warning signals (such as tornado sirens) and check with your state emergency management agency to find out how to get emergency alerts and about the best places to take shelter during different types of emergencies.
  • Make a family communication plan for how you and your family will contact one another and what steps you will take in different types of situations.
  • Prepare an emergency kit that includes a 3-day supply of food and water, health supplies (including any medicines you may be taking), personal and baby care items, safety supplies, electronics (flashlight, radio, cell phone with charger, and extra batteries), and important documents, such as emergency telephone numbers.
  • Plan ahead for where your baby will sleep if you have to evacuate your home. Your baby is safest sleeping on his or her back on a surface that is separate from others and does not have pillows, blankets, or toys. Learn more about these and other actions at Parents and Caregivers(https://www.cdc.gov/sids/Parents-Caregivers.htm#prevention) .

Illustration of doctor talking to pregnant woman about an emergency kitOnce you are out of immediate danger, continue your prenatal care even if it is not with your primary doctor.

What to Do During and Just After Disaster

Expectant Parents

Pregnant women have special medical needs. If you’re pregnant or think you may be pregnant, you and your partner can take the following steps to help you stay safe and healthy in the event of a disaster.

  • If you have any signs of preterm labor(https://www.cdc.gov/reproductivehealth/maternalinfanthealth/pretermbirth.htm#warning_signs) (labor before 37 weeks of pregnancy), call your healthcare provider or 911, or go to the hospital immediately if it is safe to leave.
  • If you have to evacuate, be prepared to leave quickly and have your emergency kit ready to go.
  • If staying at a shelter or in temporary housing, tell the staff as soon as possible that you are pregnant and if you have any health problems.
  • Once you are out of immediate danger, continue your prenatal care, even if it is not with your primary doctor. Tell the doctor or other healthcare provider if you have any health problems and if you take any medications (both over-the-counter and prescription).
  • If you have your prenatal vitamins or prescription medicines with you, take them as directed. If you don’t have your prenatal vitamins or prescription medicines with you, ask staff at the shelter for help getting them.
  • Protect yourself from infections by washing your hands often and staying away from people who are sick.
  • During disasters, harmful chemicals(https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/chemicals.html) from businesses and other places may be released into the environment. Listen to announcements from emergency officials about chemical safety and actions you may need to take to protect yourself. If you have questions about exposure to harmful chemicals during pregnancy, call MotherToBaby at 1-866-626-6847. To reach the nationwide poison control center, call 1-800-222-1222.
  • To help with physical stress, drink plenty of water and rest as often as you can. To help relieve emotional stress, talk to a healthcare provider, friend, or family member about your concerns and feelings.

Illustration of woman tucking baby into crib with words safe sleepYour baby is safest sleeping on his or her back on a surface that is separate from others and does not have pillows, blankets, or toys.

Parents of Infants

A disaster can make it difficult to access necessary supplies and health care. Parents and caregivers of infants can take the following steps to help keep their families safe and healthy in the event of a disaster.

  • If you have to evacuate, be prepared to leave quickly and have your emergency kit that includes infant care supplies, such as baby food and a portable crib, ready to go.
  • If you breastfeed your baby, continue to do so. Clean water may not be available for mixing formula or washing bottles. If you have questions about exposure to harmful chemicals while breastfeeding, call MotherToBaby at 1-866-626-6847. To reach the nationwide poison control center, call 1-800-222-1222.
  • If you are away from your home during a disaster, take these actions to help your baby sleep safely(https://www.cdc.gov/sids/Parents-Caregivers.htm#prevention) .
  • As soon as it is safe to do so, get a postpartum checkup if you are due for a visit, even if it is not with your usual doctor. If you’re not ready to get pregnant, you can ask for several months’ supply of the pill, patch, or ring or consider using a birth control method(https://www.cdc.gov/reproductivehealth/contraception/index.htm) that will prevent pregnancy for several months.
  • As soon as it is safe to do so, see a doctor or other healthcare provider for well-baby checkups or if you’re concerned about a health problem, even if it is not with your baby’s usual doctor.
  • If you have your prescription medicines with you, take them as directed. If you don’t have your medicines with you, ask staff at the shelter for help getting them.
  • If your baby is currently taking prescription or over-the-counter medicines, and you have them, continue giving them as directed.
  • To help relieve emotional stress, talk to a healthcare provider, friend, or family member about your concerns and feelings.

Honolulu, Hawaii: 14-day personal disaster kit advised

Honolulu Star-Ledger

Honolulu-14_DAYS_OF_FOOD_AND_WATER_LOOK_LIKE: Document

Learn – Educate yourself on disasters that can affect you and your Family.
Plan – Create and exercise a Family Disaster Plan. Locate a secondary meeting place and designate an off island contact.
Individual, Family and Business Disaster Planning – Disaster planning is everyone’s business. Carefully review this information and take the time today to discuss preparedness planning with family, friends, neighbors and co-workers.

 

Video:  Learn – Educate yourself on disasters that can affect you and your Family.
Plan – Create and exercise a Family Disaster Plan. Locate a secondary meeting place and designate an off island contact.
Individual, Family and Business Disaster Planning – Disaster planning is everyone’s business. Carefully review this information and take the time today to discuss preparedness planning with family, friends, neighbors and co-workers.

Develop a 14-Day Disaster Supplies Kit
Your disaster supplies kit should contain enough of the following items to last for 14-days minimum:

Water – One gallon of water per person per day for 14 days for drinking and sanitation 

Food – Non-perishable food that does not require cooking. Survival foods such as Peanut Butter, Protein Shakes, Dried Fruits, Nuts 

Eating Utensils – Plates, mess kits, forks and chop sticks. Don’t forget a non-electric can opener for canned foods 

Radio – Battery-powered or hand crank radio with NOAA Weather alert 

Light – Flashlight and or a portable fluorescent light 

Spare batteries – Check annually 

First Aid – Get a good kit and consider enrolling in a certified first aid course 

Whistle – Important for signaling for help. A whistle carries much farther than the human voice and uses less energy than yelling

Dust Mask – Helps to filter contaminated air 

Sanitation – Moist towelettes, heavy duty garbage bags, hand sanitizer gel, toilet paper, baking soda/kitty litter to absorb orders, gloves and plastic ties for personal sanitation 

Tools – Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities, duct tape 

Maps – Local area maps 

Prescription – Special medications, glasses and medical devices 

Pets – Pet food and extra water for your pet 

Miscellaneous – Infant Formula, diapers, incontinent supplies, feminine products

Department of Emergency Management City and County of Honolulu Kirk Caldwell, Mayor 650 South King Street ♦ Honolulu, HI 96813 (808) 723-8960 ♦ Fax (808) 524-3439 www.oahuDEM.org email : dem@honolulu.gov


The US State Department and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) last week conducted an unprecedented inter-agency drill to test the ability to airlift clusters of infected patients to hospitals with special biocontainment units.

AP

“……The State Department and Department of Health and Human Services said Tuesday they led an unprecedented inter-agency drill last week to test their preparedness to deal with a new outbreak of Ebola or another deadly, highly infectious disease. In the drill, 11 simulated patients were flown in specially designed bio-containment containers on a pair of 747s and three smaller Gulfstream jets from Sierra Leone to Washington’s Dulles International Airport.

From Dulles, the purported patients then went to five medical facilities across the U.S – Bellevue Hospital in New York City, Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, the University of Minnesota Medical Center in Minneapolis, the Denver Health Medical Center in Denver and the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha. The patients were played by non-infected volunteers…..”


French Disaster Plans: Dealing With the Paris Terror Attacks (Red, Yellow, and White Plans)

Medscape

In the event of a disaster in France, two complementary plans are activated: the Red Plan and the White Plan.

The Red Plan concerns what is happening in the field. It is based on the principle of extracting and grouping the injured. The injured are grouped in the field hospital, the triage and care center where the treatment that is strictly necessary is given, to ensure survival, calm the pain, and be able to transport the victims without making their condition worse. The field hospital is placed under the authority of the medical response coordinating physician.

The Alpha Red Plan, such as that activated on the night of November 13, is designed to deal with multisite events.

The Yellow Plan is a variant of the Red Plan adapted to nuclear, radiological, biological, and chemical risks. At the same time, the hospitals must be prepared to deal with an influx of victims: this is the responsibility of the White Plan.

On November 13, the emergency services counted 479 victims: operations on chronic cases therefore had to be put on hold in order to deal with the urgent cases.

The White Plan includes setting up a unit tasked with communication with the media, informing families, programming the release of beds, calling in reinforcements, etc. In line with the Social Security Modernization Act of 2004, the White Plan was extended to cover all establishments around the hospital, including clinics


HiRO: Health Integrated Rescue Operations & Disaster Drones

NBC News

“….One HiRO (Health Integrated Rescue Operations) package is designed to provide help for a severely injured victim, another is intended for up to 100 people with significant to minor injuries……Drone experts from…Hinds Community College, with advice from the researchers, designed and built the disaster drones, which are equipped to fly in bad weather. “These drones have impressive lift and distance capability, and can carry a variety of sensors, including infrared devices, to help locate victims in the dark,” says Dennis Lott, director of Hinds CC’s unmanned aerial vehicle program.

Lott notes that any progress toward EMS response drone technology remains limited by Federal Aviation Administration ‘Part 107’ regulations that currently restrict most privately owned drones to a maximum weight of 55 pounds, an altitude ceiling of 400 feet, and line-of-sight operations, that is, within visible range………”


Futuristic: Drones in Disaster Response

Drones at Work

NBC News

“….A tourist bus has tipped over and slipped into a gully…….you call 911.

Soon….a flashing light appears overhead, accompanied by a buzzing sound. You look skyward ……an EMS response drone drops from the heavens deux ex machina. The 3-feet-tall, 6-feet-diameter octo-copter has been automatically guided to your location using your smartphone’s GPS coordinates.

It lands nearby, carrying a kit stuffed with meds, gauze and bandages, a chest seal, clotting sponges, scissors, and tourniquets. As you rummage through it, a video screen inside lights up and a face appears. “I’m an emergency care physician. I’m here to help.”….”


The University of Cincinnati Public Safety Director last year  established training for an “active shooter” scenario like the one that unfolded Monday morning at The Ohio State University.  Then he and his team started training faculty, staff and students on what to do in the event an attacker arrives on campus intent to kill or harm.

USA Today

“…..However, campus police chiefs and other officials all said authorities would be remiss if their universities did not continually train and educate faculty, staff and students on what to do — and what not to do — in an active shooter scenario…..”

 


DARPA Deploys 1,000 Detectors at the National Mall as part of an exercise designed to help track radioactive material threats in urban areas.

ExecutiveGov

  • “…Hundreds of volunteers participated in the program and wielded a backpack that contained radiation detectors while walking around the urban area as they attempted to locate an “abducted physicist” as part of the simulation….”

 

 


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