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This chapter addresses concepts and issues that are essential for understanding how public health integrates with emergency management at all levels and in varying emergency circumstances. It presents a general overview of public health and emergency management systems and shows how they interface. One critical strategy to maintain public health in health-related emergencies is containment and prevention of disease. The chapter discusses the comprehensive emergency management, and outlines the incident command system (ICS), including the adoption within the United States of the National Incident Management System (NIMS). It explains the interconnectivity of healthcare systems as it relates to public health and emergency management systems and activities. The chapter describes the management of volunteers who spontaneously volunteer or are assigned to public health and deploy in support of emergencies. Finally, it examines the communications among public health and emergency management systems.
Disaster education and training programs must be designed to reflect the interdisciplinary and intergovernmental nature of the emergency management, public health, public safety, and medical systems. This chapter explains the overall context for disaster health education efforts, describing the Instructional System Development (ISD) approach to developing education and training programs. It identifies examples of disaster health education and training programs for various audiences. The use of the ISD model can improve the efficacy of these programs, emphasizing the emergency management program development cycle. To improve operational level integration, the U.S. government has mandated the use of the Incident Command System (ICS). In the U.S. there are several programs that involve training the public to support formal response efforts in disasters. These include: the Citizens Corps, Medical Reserve Corps (MRC), and Community Emergency Response Team (CERT). Disaster education and training events are designed to improve individual and organizational performance during emergencies.
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