Hospitals are required to have an Emergency Operations Plan (EOP)
which describes how a facility will respond to and recover from
all hazards. It is inclusive of the six critical elements within
the Joint Commission’s Emergency Management Standards:
Resources and assets
Safety and security
Clinical support activities
The “all hazards” approach allows ability to respond to a range
of emergencies varying in scale, duration, and cause. The EOP
addresses response procedures, capabilities and procedures when
the hospital can not be supported by the community, recovery
strategies, initiating and terminating response and recovery
phases, activating authority and identifies alternate sites for
care, treatment and services.
The Emergency Operations Plan (EOP) provides the structure and
processes that the organization utilizes to respond to and
initially recover from an event. The EOP is therefore the
response and recovery component of the EMP.
The Joint Commission
Emergency Management Standardsare very specific to the
requirements of the hospital EOP, however it should be noted that
some of these requirements cross over to mitigation and
preparedness activities. For a suggested outline of the Emergency
Management Program and for further guidance, see the following
Wildfires, landslides and influenza surge are only some of the
incidents to hit California hospitals this past year. The
initial response to an emergency begins with recognition that an
incident may (or has) occurred.
In cases where the incident is likely to impact or disrupt
routine operations, and may require coordination of efforts and
response involvement among hospitals, Health Care Coalition
partners, EMS, public health, and environmental health.
Key management issues involving situational status, incident
characteristics and resource capabilities must be quickly
determined and communicated amongst response partners in order to
establish a common operating picture.
This assessment tool was developed to assist hospitals in
revising and updating existing disaster plans or in the
development of new plans. The tool was originally used by a
subject matter expert survey team to collect data for a
Department of Homeland Security (DHS) grant so it is constructed
in a survey format. The data was then used to develop a
specialized instruction program for that facility that addressed
any areas needing improvements. We feel this assessment tool can
also be utilized in a self-assessment format by the institution
in the review of their disaster plans.