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EMS connecting with Emergency Preparedness

EMS connecting with emergency preparedness

By Larry Torris
All Hazard Planner
Health Security, Preparedness and Response Program and EMS and Trauma Systems
Work in EMS emergency preparedness and the vision of improving the resiliency of Oregon EMS communities continues to come into focus on several topics. The process for tracking patients for continuity of care and repatriation is starting. Workgroups with a hospital focus and prehospital focus will convene with the goal of establishing the basis of the process, specifics needed to accomplish tracking statewide in a disaster, and evaluation of systems that could accomplish the process. This is a common goal nationwide.
While attending a conference in Minneapolis, I connected with many different groups working on the same subject. The common theme that emerged is that the idea is important, but difficult to manage. Federal systems are in place that need to be connected with, but the implementation and practice are hard to accomplish. The first meeting of the minds for Oregon in July was great and the workgroups are getting ready to tackle this for Oregon. The goal is a process that will be scalable, simple and usable daily.
The second topic is the Prehospital Mobilization, or All Hazard Plan. The focus of this plan is on EMS communities’ responses to disasters and need in overwhelming situations. With best practice evaluation from other regions, groups and agencies, the intent is to provide guidance in the mobilization of resources. The ability to have a plan prior to an event and give a standard guide for meeting surges is a key to survival for our EMS system. The needs of different groups and the possibility of responding to help other regions that need to send people into Oregon for care is a real possibility. This mobilization plan will be a guide for providing a response to those areas. As a living document, the scope and abilities of Oregon to provide resources will change along with the guide.
For more information on how you can be a part of EMS preparedness, check out the following websites:
State Emergency Registry of Volunteers in Oregon (SERV-OR)
Learn new skills to help others in disasters. Meet colleagues with similar interests.
Offered free of charge in multiple locations around Oregon.
Contact Larry Torris to provide ideas and input in EMS preparedness.
Next: EMSC Updates