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Disaster Medicine (DM) education for Emergency Medicine (EM) residents is highly variable due to time constraints, competing priorities, and program expertise. The investigators’ aim was to define and prioritize DM core competencies for EM residency programs through consensus opinion of experts and EM professional organization representatives.
Investigators utilized a modified Delphi methodology to generate a recommended, prioritized core curriculum of 40 DM educational topics for EM residencies.
The DM topics recommended and outlined for inclusion in EM residency training included: patient triage in disasters, surge capacity, introduction to disaster nomenclature, blast injuries, hospital disaster mitigation, preparedness, planning and response, hospital response to chemical mass-casualty incident (MCI), decontamination indications and issues, trauma MCI, disaster exercises and training, biological agents, personal protective equipment, and hospital response to radiation MCI.
This expert-consensus-driven, prioritized ranking of DM topics may serve as the core curriculum for US EM residency programs.
The Society of Academic Emergency Medicine Disaster Medicine Interest Group, the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response – Technical Resources, Assistance Center, and Information Exchange (ASPR TRACIE) team, and the National Institutes of Health Library searched disaster medicine peer-reviewed and gray literature to identify, review, and disseminate the most important new research in this field for academics and practitioners.
MEDLINE/PubMed and Scopus databases were searched with key words. Additional gray literature and focused hand search were performed. A Level I review of titles and abstracts with inclusion criteria of disaster medicine, health care system, and disaster type concepts was performed. Eight reviewers performed Level II full-text review and formal scoring for overall quality, impact, clarity, and importance, with scoring ranging from 0 to 20. Reviewers summarized and critiqued articles scoring 16.5 and above.
Articles totaling 1176 were identified, and 347 were screened in a Level II review. Of these, 193 (56%) were Original Research, 117 (34%) Case Report or other, and 37 (11%) were Review/Meta-Analysis. The average final score after a Level II review was 11.34. Eighteen articles scored 16.5 or higher. Of the 18 articles, 9 (50%) were Case Report or other, 7 (39%) were Original Research, and 2 (11%) were Review/Meta-Analysis.
This first review highlighted the breadth of disaster medicine, including emerging infectious disease outbreaks, terror attacks, and natural disasters. We hope this review becomes an annual source of actionable, pertinent literature for the emerging field of disaster medicine.
As Hurricane Katrina bore down on New Orleans in August 2005, the city's mandatory evacuation prompted the exodus of an estimated 80% of its 485,000 residents. According to estimates from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), at least 18 states subsequently hosted >200,000 evacuees.
In this case study, “Operation Helping Hands” (OHH), the Massachusetts health and medical response in assisting Hurricane Katrina evacuees is described. Operation Helping Hands represents the largest medical response to evacuees in recent Massachusetts history.
The data describing OHH were derived from a series of structured interviews conducted with two leading public health officials directing planning efforts, and a sample of first responders with oversight ofoperations at the evacuation site. Also, a literature review was conducted to identify similar experiences, common challenges, and lessons learned.
Activities and services were provided in the following areas: (1) administration and management;(2) medical and mental health; (3) public health; and (4) social support. This study adds to the knowledge base for future evacuation and shelter planning, and presents a conceptual framework that could be used by other researchers and practitioners to describe the process and out comes of similar operations.
This study provides a description of the planning and implementation efforts of the largest medical evacuee experience in recent Massachusetts history, an effort that involved multiple agencies and partners. The conceptual framework can inform future evacuation and shelter initiatives at the state and national levels, and promotes the overarching public health goal of the highest attainable standard of health for all.
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