Russell Phillips and Associates recently announced it was awarded a contract to complete catastrophic surge and evacuation assessments for 60 hospitals by the Washington State Department of Health Office of Emergency Preparedness and Response.
The project includes surge capacity, transportation evacuation planning and a categories of care resource tool to support decision-making processes. This follows a survey of 44 hospitals in the state over 2015-16.
“These assessments play a critical role in ensuring the highest quality of patient care during times of crisis,” Scott Aronson, principal at RPA, said. “We are pleased to expand our relationship with the state of Washington and to help the hospitals to strengthen their disaster response procedures.”
RPA has had a long-standing collaborative relationship with Washington state hospitals and nursing homes, commencing in a 2009 project when RPA wrote hospital and long-term care evacuation mutual aid plans for Pierce and King counties. From 2010 to 2012, the next phase of projects took place for surge capacity planning in Pierce and King counties and mutual aid planning in Region 1. This culminated in a 2015 and 2016 project for the Northwest Healthcare Response Network and Washington state DOH to address regional disaster planning for 44 hospitals in the State.
As part of this new project, every clinical and procedural area at the final 60 hospitals will be assessed to determine their specific surge capacity in the event of a disaster. Scenarios include: internal surge, external surge, mass casualty events or epidemic and pandemic events. Survey results will drill down into short and long-term capabilities to expand bed capacity along with staffing, equipment and other resources needed to accommodate a surge.
This project will also ascertain specific transportation needs for moving sub-specialty patient populations and matching acuity level with other hospitals throughout the state. These tools will be available to support local, county, regional and statewide planning efforts for small and large-scale disaster events.