BOX 5-3

Suggestions to Improve Coordination and Integration Across Response Platforms

Collaboration

  • Face-to-face meetings to establish personal connections

  • Regular conversations/meeting

  • Partnerships, MOUs

  • Regional exercises involving all stakeholders

  • States should play a supportive role

    • Provide education, facilitate planning, establish communications

    • Mobilize and deploy resources and coordinate outside help

Resources

  • Expand recruitment into demographics with the required skill sets that may not have been previously considered (e.g., doctors and nurses may volunteer during their off hours).

  • Identify resources in the community (people, equipment, vehicles, communications systems).

  • Survey people for certifications/education/experience they may have beyond their primary jobs.

  • Assign staff whose jobs are nonessential in a disaster to other supportive roles.

  • Explore integrating trauma surgeons into the larger system (e.g., a pre-registered, pre-credentialed, rapidly mobilized force of surgeons bringing surgery to the scene).

  • Seek federal, state, and private grant opportunities to fund equipment purchases and education:

    • Assistance to Firefighters Grants program

      • Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant

    • Rural Fire Assistance Program

    • State EMS grants

    • Insurance company grants (Fireman’s Fund, Allstate Foundation, etc.)

Planning and Exercises

  • Plan and implement as many drills and exercises as possible.

  • Integrate the public in preparedness exercises that are interesting and fun.

  • Include special needs populations in planning and exercises.

  • A leadership succession plan should be part of incident management planning.

  • Explore and establish backup communications strategies ahead of time.

Education

  • Community education prior to an event can save lives

  • Include interested high school students



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