• Disaster Medicine

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    #487: Disaster Medicine
    December 2019

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    In This Edition

    • Summarize the effects of disasters on public health, including water and sanitation, safety and security, infection risk, and mental health.
    • Describe the four phases of disasters and the initial steps in disaster declaration and response.
    • Describe the key components of the incident command system and the hospital incident command system.
    • Summarize the Department of Homeland Security recommendations for disaster planning.
    • Describe the recommendations for patients in developing their own disaster pre­paredness plans. Describe the recommendations for the most vulnerable patients, including elderly patients, pregnant women, children, patients with disabilities, homeless patients, and patients undergoing dialysis or chemotherapy.
    • Discuss the importance of participation in simulations, drills, and tabletop exer­cises as well as the creation of mutual aid agreements before disasters.
    • Describe the roles of volunteers and responders during a disaster, including use of reverse triage to increase surge capacity, use of triage algorithms, and safety con­cerns for responders.
    • Summarize options for maintaining availability of medical supplies and preparing for anticipated medical needs during disasters, including management of natural disaster-associated injuries, conditions, and trauma.

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