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Our Latest News and Events.NCDMPH and FEMA offer fire safety tips for this holiday season.
--Practicing Fire Safety this Winter --
With cold weather sweeping the nation this week and December around the corner, space heaters are turned on, candles are lit, and stoves are in heavy use with holiday cooking. These activities bring a significant fire risk, which is why FEMA is mobilizing its annual winter fire safety campaign. Provided below are links and resources to keep you both warm and safe this winter.
NCDMPH thanks FEMA for creating resources to keep families safe this holiday season. Follow NCDMPH on Twitter and Facebook to learn more about fire safety.
November 12th, 2013
-- Typhoon Haiyan Strikes Philippines and Vietnam --
On Friday November 8th, Typhoon Haiyan made landfall in the Philippines. Known as Typhoon Yolanda in the Philippines, the storm’s winds approached 195 miles per hour with gusts up to 235 miles per hour. Typhoon Haiyan, which is the equivalent to a Category 1 hurricane, reached Vietnam the following Monday.
Over a thousand are deceased according to the Philippine government with over 2,000 injured. The Associated Press reported that 10,000 of the 1, 387, 446 families affected by the storm could be deceased. An accurate measure of infrastructure damage is unlikely to emerge for several days. Vietnam currently doesn’t estimate any casualty from the storm although several are missing.
Further stress is expected in the region as the tropical depression Zoraida approaches. This storm will delay and hinder ongoing relief efforts in the region. The depression will increase current public health concerns including: starvation, malnutrition, water contamination, management of the deceased, behavioral health effects of Haiyan, and general hygiene.
The United States Department of Defense began response efforts on Sunday by sending a team of 90 Marines and sailors for air support and search and rescue operations. The USS George Washington aircraft carrier is currently in route to the Philippines with 5,000 sailors and more than 80 aircrafts. The aircraft carrier includes a water distilling plant that can produce 400,000 gallons of fresh water a day. Several other US cruisers are traveling with the USS George Washington and the supply ship USNS Charles Drew will rendezvous with the group when they arrive.
NCDMPH has expanded the Resilience through Learning hurricanes page to include information on typhoons and cyclones. Trainers, educators, and responders can engage with this resource in preparing for the next event. The National Library of Medicine’s Disaster Information Management Resource Center also released a new page on typhoons.
The National Center extends its gratitude to the Department of Defense for its generous outpouring of support. NCDMPH also would like to thank all organizations currently funding or participating in the relief efforts in the Philippines and Vietnam.
October 30, 2013
-- EMSC Grantee releases Pediatric Disaster Triage Online Lesson --
Connecticut EMS for Children Targeted Issue Grantee Dr. Mark Cicero released Pediatric Disaster Triage: Doing the Most Good for the Most Patients in the Least Time. This resource comes as a result of the Health Resources and Services Administration’s (HRSA) federal EMSC Program which funds EMSC Targeted Issue (TI) grants to states and accredited schools of medicine "to identify new approaches in the provision of the best possible emergency care for children throughout the nation." In addition, this project typically provides a valuable service to the entire nation. An interactive map of all EMSC TI grantee projects can be found at the EMSC website.
Dr. Cicero’s resource targets prehospital providers with a course containing five narrated modules which discuss the following:
While this training is not accredited, the EMSC National Resource Center is currently seeking continuing education hours for this course. Until then, participants can print out a certificate of completion and use the certificate to seek CE from their own institution.
NCDMPH also offers trainings and online products related to pediatric disaster health. The majority of these learning products come with CE credit:
NCDMPH applauds Dr. Cicero for releasing this resource near the one year anniversary of Superstorm Sandy. As the nation reflects on the impact of this disaster and processes the ongoing recovery, it is important to gather resources to address the needs of vulnerable populations.
October 23, 2013
-- Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind visits NCDMPH --
The National Center recently hosted Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind for a special training on how to evacuate with limited or no vision. Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind (CLB) is an organization in the DC Metro Region which helps clients with limited or no vision. CLB orientation and mobility specialists recently started visiting clients’ places of work in order to orient them to what they will need to do during a disaster.
CLB began the training by passing around goggles that simulated various types of vision impairments. The goggles replicated the effects of conditions such as glaucoma, macular degeneration, and cataracts. Providing the simulators helped orient the staff to the variety of existing vision conditions and how each condition interferes with vision differently. Staff then learned the three basic protective techniques all individuals with limited or no vision should use in an evacuation.
Staff practiced using these techniques while exiting a room with closed eyes or wearing the simulators. With one hand on a wall, staff members used the first protective technique with the other hand.
NCDMPH then learned how to assist someone with limited or no vision. These techniques can also be engaged when evacuating someone with limited or no vision.
NCDMPH thanks CLB for visiting and providing this valuable service. To learn more about Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind and their services, visit their website at www.clb.org.
October 8, 2013
-- GAO Recommends Federal Guidance on Nuclear & Radiological Attack --
The US Government Accountability Office has released, “Nuclear Terrorism Response Plans: Major Cities Could Benefit from Federal Guidance on Responding to Nuclear and Radiological Attacks.” This report comes in response to GAO’s recent survey on emergency managers in 31 cities on their cities’ preparedness to respond to a radiological dispersal device (RDD) or improvised nuclear device (IND). GAO conducted their survey via questionnaire and 27 emergency managers of the 31 surveyed responded. GAO chose the cities considered most at risk for a terrorist attack by the Department of Homeland Security.
The GAO survey revealed the following about emergency managers’ (EMs) preparedness and perceived preparedness to respond to an RDD or an IND:
Federal planning guidance has been developed for IND and RDD response, but, according to the GAO report, more detailed response plans are not readily available or understood by city emergency management. Without these detailed plans, emergency managers felt their cities were unprepared to address the types of terrorist event identified in the National Planning Scenarios. Therefore, GAO recommends that FEMA create a clear guidance document that clarifies the early response capabilities and federal resources for cities for IND and RDD attacks.
NCDMPH thanks GAO for addressing this issue of national security. The National Center recently developed a continuing education accredited primer that discusses the unique needs of pediatric patients during and after exposure to radiation. Health workers in the 31 cities most at risk for a radiological attack can use this resource to address pediatric needs in such an event.