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Disaster Preparedness: Strategies for Managing the Unexpected

Hospitals must always be prepared to respond at a moment’s notice to powerful stormshurricanes, tornadoes, mass casualty events and other potential disasters.

If a disaster is preceded with sufficient warning such as weather reports, hospitals typically activate an incident command center that manages resources and response activities before, during and after the event. Similarly, some clinical outsourcing partners may have the resources and expertise in disaster response needed to operate their own command center or supplement and support the hospital’s efforts.

In situations where there is little or no warning that a disaster is headed your way, it’s critical that your clinical outsourcing partner is prepared for a variety of disaster response scenarios so they can rely on that training to manage chaotic and unpredictable situations.

Beyond the capacity to manage patient demand before, during, and after a disaster, an experienced clinical outsourcing partner will have processes in place to support clinicians and their families—making sure they are safe and have the resources they need to manage through the event.

Almost every hospital will face some sort of natural or man-made disaster at some point. In addition to ensuring the hospital is prepared with a disaster plan and practice drills, it’s also critical to understand the expertise and preparedness of your clinical outsourcing partners, such as the physician group providing care in your emergency department.

Matt Stapleton, TeamHealth Senior Vice President of our Southeast Group, who his helping the region brace for the impact of Hurricane Dorian said, “We are able to bring resources and clinicians together during our preparedness calls, and that allows the clinicians to go back to their hospital partners and be the best clinician possible. TeamHealth is consistently here to support our hospital partners, clinicians and non-clinical associates during these storms.”

It is vital that your clinical outsourcing partner has experience in managing disasters, including a structured approach to preparation and response, as well as the ability to leverage national resources to support their hospital partners before, during and after a disaster or mass casualty event.

Learn more about TeamHealth’s strategies for managing the unexpected by reading our full disaster preparedness white paper. Then call 800.818.1498 or email and let TeamHealth help make sure your hospital ready to manage a potential disaster.

originally posted on October 11, 2018