3 November 1997
Source: Mail list email@example.com
Date: Sun, 02 Nov 1997 22:54:41 -0500 From: "Henry Siegelson, MD, FACEP" <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: TERRORISM@mediccom.org Subject: Domestic Preparedness Program The Domestic Preparedness Program is a free, one day, 8 hour lecture program that is funded by the Nunn-Lugar legislation. The training is supported by six federal partners: the Department of Defense, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Energy, the Department of Justice, and the Environmental Protection Agency. This program is designed to deliver information in a classroom setting regarding the preparation, mitigation, and response for and recovery from a terrorist attack or mass casualty event related to the use of Weapons of Mass Destruction. CME is offered. Currently, 127 cities are scheduled to receive training. A section of the training program is dedicated to educating hospital administrators, nurses, physicians, hospital security, and affiliated staff. Another section is devoted to EMS first responders. The information is taught in a train-the-trainer manner. Topics include: Hazardous Materials Awareness Triage Terrorism Awareness Nuclear Weapons Biologic Weapons Chemical Weapons ? Personal Protective Equipment Explosives Crush Syndrome Planning for Mass Casualties Hospital Decontamination Systems Hospital Disaster Planning Training will take place in Los Angeles, California at the following locations: Hospital Training Emergency Medical Services Agency 555 Ferguson Drive Suite 220 Commerce, California 90022 EMS Training LA City Fire Academy 1700 Stadium Way Los Angeles, California 90012 Contact number for reservations or directions: 713-974-1120 For most cities, the local emergency management agency will have information regarding location, times, and registration (free). Other training: Dec. 1-4 - San Antonio Dec. 8-11 Phoenix Jan 5-8 - Wash DC Jan 12-15 -Memphis; Jan 20-23 - Kansas City Jan 26-30 - San Jose' Feb. 2-5 - Honolulu Feb 9-12 Indy Feb 23-26 Seattle March 9-12- Miami March 23-26 Atlanta March 30-April 2 - San Fran April 6-9 Jacksonville April 20-23 San Diego One of the highlights of the training elucidates the federally mandated preparations necessary to protect hospital staff from cross contamination while managing patients exposed to hazardous materials. A hazardous material is any substance that is potentially toxic to a biological system. This definition not only includes chemicals, but also biologic and disease-causing agents. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has developed specific regulations which require employers to implement safety policies and to provide training and personal protective equipment to all employees potentially exposed to any of these substances. These regulations apply directly to hospitals and are supported by the Joint Commission for the Accreditation of Hospital Organizations. The Agency for Toxic Substances Disease Registry noted in a study of 11 states that only 18% of patients exposed to hazardous chemicals received care or attention from fire services or EMS prior to presentation for medical care at local hospitals. Thus, the vast majority of patients exposed to hazardous materials will present to hospitals in a contaminated state. Every hospital should have the capacity to safely assess, decontaminate, and treat at least one patient exposed to a biologic, chemical, or radioactive substance. Massive quantities of hazardous materials are stored and transported through our communities daily. In addition, terrorists have shown the willingness and the capacity to use weapons of mass destruction when attacking civilians. Hospitals must be prepared to offer care to these victims. Summary Hospitals are a valuable disaster resource. Systems must be developed that will enable the medical system to offer a safe response to a terrorist attack. Every hospital must have the capacity to safely assess and treat at least one patient exposed to a hazardous material. It is essential that emergency physicians and nurses attend appropriate training courses to become more familiar with the medical consequences of and response to a terrorist attack.