The Importance of Swift Water Rescue Teams | Domestic Preparedness Photo: iStock.com/Marc Bruxelle
Resilience

The Importance of Swift Water Rescue Teams

by Allison G. S. Knox -

Emergency management is a complex, collaborative network of agencies, levels of government, nonprofit organizations, and volunteers coming together following a disaster. In addition to general plans and practices that can be applied to many emergency responses, some emergencies require more specialized training that may not be available in every jurisdiction. Swift water rescue teams are assets that may be needed now more than ever.

 
Preparedness

Planning for Animals in an Emergency Management Strategy

by Heather Kitchen -

Throughout history, animals and pets have held varying degrees of importance to the people who care for them. They have been worshipped, raised for food, served as co-workers on farms, or just loved as companions. Regardless of their “worth,” when something disrupts the ability to care for those animals, outside help is needed. The outside help currently needed is limited when it comes to rescuing, caring for, and sheltering pets because it has not been fully integrated into emergency management’s planning activities.

Commentary

Modern Responses to Today’s Disasters

by Catherine L. Feinman -

Disaster plans of previous generations do not adequately reflect the risks, threats, and needs of modern society. Changing demographics, aging populations, and increasing natural and human-caused disasters each reinforce the need for emergency and disaster preparedness professionals to gain the knowledge and training needed to make informed decisions to mitigate threats and execute effective responses when mitigation is not enough.

Healthcare

Helping the Chronically Ill During Natural Disasters

by Allegra Balmadier -

Although 2017 was a historic year for natural disasters, 2018 is turning out to be more of the same. Filled with wildfires, tornadoes, floods, tropical systems, and the devastating Hurricanes Florence and Michael, it appears the frequency of natural disasters is increasing. Preparedness professionals face challenges meeting the needs of everyone impacted by such events, especially those with chronic conditions. Fortunately, with pre-disaster planning and post-disaster recovery and evaluation, preparedness professionals can better help the most vulnerable access the resources they need.

Commentary

The Opioid Crisis & Its Impact on Public Safety

by Catherine L. Feinman -

The United States is in the midst of an epidemic of addiction to opioids and fentanyl. On 18 September 2018, DomPrep hosted a roundtable discussion at MedStar NRH Rehabilitation Network in Washington, DC, to discuss this threat. The three-hour conversation led by Craig DeAtley, PA-C, emergency manager for MedStar System, examined the extent of the problem, including the harmful risks to operational responders – people who are in physical contact with people as part of their daily work – from fentanyl/opioid exposure. Key discussion points summarized in this article included: impacts on public safety, data collection, best practices, personnel protection, and whole community collaboration.

Updates

FLIR Systems Receives Development Contract Totaling $1.2M From the Department of Defense

FLIR Systems Inc. announced it has been awarded the first option phase on a five-year, cost-plus fixed fee contract by the United States Department of Defense’s Defense Threat Reduction Agency. This option totals $1.2 million for continued development of the FLIR Agentase C2 chemical agent disclosure spray (ADS) for detection of nerve agents and a new formulation for fentanyl detection.

Evolv Technology Awarded SAFETY Act Designation for Evolv Edge™

Evolv Technology today announced Evolv Edge™, its people screening system that detects weapons and bombs, has achieved the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) SAFETY Act Designation. Following a rigorous application and due diligence process by DHS, the Evolv Edge is now a Qualified Anti-Terrorism Technology (QATT).

Researchers Discover Potential Antidote to Botulism

Researchers have identified a compound that strongly inhibits botulinum neurotoxin, the most toxic compound known. That inhibiting compound, nitrophenyl psoralen (NPP), could be used as a treatment to reduce paralysis induced by botulism. Botulinum neurotoxin is considered a potential bioweapon because there is no U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved antidote.

FDA Approval of Anti-Seizure Drug Provides a New Tool for Protecting Americans During a Chemical Attack

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval of the drug Seizalam® (midazolam injection) as an anti-seizure medication, protects Americans from a potentially deadly health effect of chemical weapons. Having this drug, developed by Meridian Medical Technologies, available in multi-use vials makes drug administration easier in emergencies involving a large number of people exposed to chemicals that cause prolonged seizures.

New Virtual Tool Gives Responders, Educators an “EDGE” on School Safety

First responders and educators now have a tool at their disposal to help ensure the safety of the nation’s schools, as well as the students and faculty within them. The Enhanced Dynamic Geo-Social Environment (EDGE), a virtual training platform, allows teachers, school staff, law enforcement officers, and others tasked with school security to create and practice response plans for a wide range of critical incidents.