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Improving medical staff mass casualty readiness

29 Sep 2019

Medical staff Preparedness Council formed, plan to be tested

By: Matthew Boles, MD, vice president for Medical Affairs Wayne McFarlin, emergency preparedness administrator

Lessons learned in real-world events indicate that when facing a mass casualty incident, medical staff collaboration saves lives. 

Last year’s mock high school shooting exercise introduced the process for Salem Health’s emergency department, surgical services and hospitalist medical staff to collaborate on the mass casualty event medical plan. Although the collaboration was a success, participating physicians reported more work is needed to define their role when casualties arrive. 

That work is beginning with a core group from the newly formed Medical Staff Preparedness Council.  This council will be working on a variety of focus areas, namely how communication is carried out, plus improving medical staff’s response and actions during these events. The updated plan will be tested at the next mass casualty incident exercise. The goal is to use this opportunity as a learning exercise to formalize our mass casualty event plan and then inform the entire medical staff with essential takeaways we can all use to maximize preparation. 

Stay tuned for more information!