Digital Supplement, Special Topics

June 2012 Supplement, Disaster & Terrorism Preparedness

Rapid Resource Deployment

All successful response operations must begin with a collaborative effort between all partners. This should include planning along with information and resource sharing. North Carolina is divided into eight trauma regions with regional advisory councils that oversee trauma transfer programs and improve trauma care. WakeMed is the Level I trauma center for the Capital Regional Advisory Council.

Triage from a Distance

Remember the days when the Star Trek medical tricorder, the fictional device that could read and diagnose patients instantly, seemed unrealistic? Well, the DHS Science & Technology Directorate (S&T) is working toward making this and other futuristic devices a reality.In development by the DHS S&T, the Standoff Patient Triage Tool (SPTT) will allow emergency responders to rapidly triage victims from a safe distance, particularly in harsh, difficult to reach, high-hazard areas.

Mobile Communications

If you have served in the EMS world for any length of time, you have found that during any major event, communications is usually the number one issue. After 9/11 we saw the country beef up its hazmat decontamination response. After Hurricane Katrina, we saw similar changes with disaster communications.

Chemical Release

Faced with a large number of people exposed to a chemical warfare agent or a toxic industrial chemical, EMS responders should remember a simple rule of thumb: Consider the victims to be on fire and act with the same urgency. Jarring as it may seem, such practical guidance can help first responders prioritize and provide the best care for the most people.

Preparing for ‘D Days’

As you read this, there are thousands of aircraft in the skies over the U.S., and millions of Americans are traveling in buses, trains and subways. There are also millions of people sleeping or resting in hotels, hospitals, condominiums and nursing care facilities.

Bonus: Decon Tips for First Responders

After taking the steps in “Chemical Release,” responders should then quickly proceed with a more comprehensive decon process.

Bonus: How to Help People with Special Needs Survive CBRNE Events

When catastrophic events occur, providing emergency medical services to people with special needs, such as the elderly or those with mobility impairments, can be a formidable challenge for even the most seasoned responders. To help ensure a state of readiness, EMS systems must plan well in advance and coordinate in ways that they may find atypical.