California hospitals are a critical element within the disaster medical response system and work collaboratively with local government, other health care providers and other agencies to plan, prepare for and respond to the needs of victims of natural or man-made disasters, bioterrorism, and other public health emergencies. Hospital emergency preparedness is a priority for government at all levels, as well as a key focus of regulatory and accrediting agencies.
Now is a good time to focus on preparedness. As hurricane season continues, Hurricane Harvey recovery is overlapping with Hurricanes Irma, Jose and Katia. Meanwhile, wildfires are raging in the northwest US, and an earthquake struck Mexico this morning. This year’s National Preparedness Month Theme is: Disasters don’t plan ahead. You can.
Find out how to prepare for those unknown future disasters at the Ready.gov website. Be better equipped to handle these events wherever you might be when they strike: work, home, school to name a few. Materials and weekly themes can be found on the National Preparedness Month website.
This year the 2017 Statewide Medical and Health Exercise will take place on Thursday, November 16, 2017.
The Statewide Medical and Health Exercise Program consists of four phases (Multi-media Training, Organizational Self Assessment, Tabletop Exercise, and Functional Exercise) where each phase helps to build on and prepare for the next phase. The program utilizes the Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP) and aligns with Public Health Emergency Preparedness (PHEP)/Hospital Preparedness Program (HPP) grants.
The Statewide Medical and Health Exercise Program is customizable to fit the needs of any local organization, facility, or jurisdiction. You can change the scenario, exercise date, objectives, or any other details to fit your needs.
You can find more information and the exercise materials on the SWMHE Website.
As the damage from Hurricane Harvey continues to grow in many Texas and Louisiana communities, CHA and the Regional Associations announced today that they will support hospital employees in those areas, beginning with a monetary contribution to the Texas Hospital Association’s Employee Assistance Fund. All donations to the fund will be used to directly assist hospital employees in Federal Emergency Management Agency-designated disaster areas who have lost their homes or been displaced.
National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD) members are responding to the call for help. Founded in 1970, National VOAD is an association of organizations that mitigate and alleviate the impact of disasters, provides a forum promoting cooperation, communication, coordination and collaboration; and fosters more effective delivery of services to communities affected by disaster. For more information about how to become a member go to their Join the Movement Webpage.