Article by by Martie Moore, iAdvance Senior Care
“During a recent facility visit, I was shown the locked supply closet where the emergency preparedness supplies are stored. In exploring their process for activation, I learned the person who could choose to activate and who held the key for the supply closet was the facility administrator. The administrator’s decision tree was built upon the hypotheses that business would operate as normal in an emergency, and he/she could get into the facility in a timely manner. That theory has some fundamental flaws when it comes to emergency preparedness. A well-thought-out plan holds no bias about roles or specific people. It is designed to use the skills and abilities of the people there in a moment of need.
Emergency preparedness used to mean planning for natural disasters, fires, mass casualty or other types of patient surges or care needs. The general belief was if you had plans for fire, flood and earthquake, you were sufficiently prepared. Additionally, emergency preparedness focused primarily on the acute care delivery system, as it would be the first line of impact. The threat of infectious diseases, mass casualties and large-scale events in recent years has prompted an examination of the whole healthcare delivery system and the need to be prepared and work in an organized manner.”