California hospitals are a critical element within the disaster medical response system and work collaboratively with local government, other health care providers and other agencies to plan, prepare for and respond to the needs of victims of natural or man-made disasters, bioterrorism, and other public health emergencies. Hospital emergency preparedness is a priority for government at all levels, as well as a key focus of regulatory and accrediting agencies.
As a precautionary measure following the 2017 and 2018 wildfires, PG&E is expanding its Community Wildfire Safety Program to further reduce wildfire risks and help keep customers and communities safe. As part of this program, they are asking customers to be prepared for power outages.
If extreme fire danger conditions threaten a portion of the electric system, it may be necessary for PG&E to turn off electricity in the interest of public safety. This is called a Public Safety Power Shutoff.
PGE will be hosting a webinar on their wildfire safety program for interested hospitals on June 7th from 9 am – 10 am (details on how to participate will be shared soon)
FEMA’s National Integration Center has developed and released a Senior Leader Toolkit, a resource that both emergency management and senior leaders can use to discuss roles and responsibilities during incidents.
The toolkit is available on the FEMA website and includes an Elected Officials/Senior Executives Quick Reference Guide, a Department Head Quick Reference Guide, and a NIMS Senior Leader Briefing Template.
The findings from Governor Newsom’s strike force has been compiled into the report Wildfires and Climate Change: California’s Energy Future. The report has recommended changes to strengthen wildfire prevention and response. The strike force will continue to work this issue and take action on the the report ideas.
CHA is now accepting submissions for presentations and best practices posters for the 2019 CHA Disaster Planning for California Hospitals conference. The conference is a unique opportunity for your organization to showcase and share its emergency preparedness knowledge and expertise with a cross-section of peers. Submissions must be received by April 30.
Wildfires. Mudslides. Floods. Mass shootings. These once rare or infrequent events have become regular occurrences, and no two disasters are ever the same. Now more than ever, hospitals must reevaluate our procedures and redefine preparation.
From communication to compliance, it is time to rethink our strategies and prepare for the new normal.