New tool to help hospitals prepare for influx of pediatric patients

Emergency Management Alert, March 17, 2009

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality has released a tool to help hospitals prepare to treat pediatric victims of bioterrorism attacks and other public health emergencies, such as pandemic influenza.

Hospitals can use the report “Pediatric Hospital Surge Capacity in Public Health Emergencies” to prepare to meet the special medical needs of children. The report addresses needs such as surge capacity, communications, staff responsibilities, triage, stress management, and security concerns.

Along with helping children’s hospitals prepare for a large number of children with communicable airborne and foodborne agents, the report also aims to assist general emergency departments to develop plans to provide care to large numbers of critically ill pediatric patients.

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