Safety

How surviving a disaster changes the disaster plan

Hospital Safety Insider, December 1, 2016

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As the South recovers from Hurricane Matthew, heed lessons from facilities that survived natural disasters

Putting a disaster plan in place is a critical step for a healthcare facility, but it becomes especially important for the facility operations department—without its proactive action, doctors and nurses will have nowhere to practice, and a community safe house could be lost.

In reality, however, it’s difficult to truly prepare for the chaos of a disaster. Each event teaches a lesson, and it’s the facility manager’s job to make sure this lesson isn’t learned at the expense of patient or staff lives.

An evolving plan
Few recent events have had the impact of Hurricane Katrina, not only on affected localities but also on building codes as a whole.

“Hurricane Katrina was an indescribable event that forced the hospital and the community to deal with issues that were not planned for,” recalls Ken McDowell, CHSP, CHEP, safety officer for Memorial Hospital at Gulfport (Mississippi).

Continue reading here.



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