In the wake of the events of 9/11, the Missouri Primary Care Association (MPCA) recognized the need for Missouri’s federally funded health centers to be fully integrated into the State’s and local community’s emergency management and disaster response network. At the core of an effective response is the recognition of the need to have a basic emergency preparedness plan-a blueprint to guide the health center through times or periods of uncertainty.
Since 2002, the Missouri Primary Care Association (MPCA) has received federal funding to assist the community health centers (CHC) with their emergency preparedness activities which include develop/enhance emergency plans, strengthen local/state partnerships, purchase of personal protective equipment, and education. Funding has been made available through the Hospital Preparedness Program of the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of the Assistant Secretary of Preparedness and Response with the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. The MPCA Emergency Response Preparedness Planning (ERPP) task force was formed which includes a representative from each Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC). The task force provided emergency management networking, planning and educational opportunities for all FQHCs.
FQHC Emergency Management Charge:
Missouri’s health centers have INTEGRATED their planning efforts locally, regionally and statewide working with key partners in public health. Health centers have each created an internal response plan that coordinates with and compliments the local and regional plan. The FQHCs have access to the MO statewide EMSytem notification system. EMSystem: https://emresource.emsystem.com/login.jsp
In order to react and INVESTIGATE possible bioterrorism incidents, health center staff must not only be informed, but also be protected. The ERPP Task Force, thru the MPCA has purchased personal protective equipment appropriate for health center staff and FQHCs provide ongoing PPE training with clinic staff.
Health center plans coordinate with local partners to help CONTROL any disaster or event. Many health centers are prepared to play a key role in information dissemination, assisting the walking wounded, mass immunizations, or mass distribution of pharmaceuticals.
Final stages of any event will be to RECOVER public security and trust. Health centers are preparing to be primary information providers for their patients in dealing with the after effects of any disaster or bioterrorism event. The ERPP Task Force recognizes that the integration of primary and behavioral health care that already takes place within a health center will provide a strong base for follow up treatment.
Lastly in response planning is the continuous effort to IMPROVE the systems and services provided. Health centers are committed to continuous participation in drills and exercises to strengthen our response capacity.
To see how Emergency Preparedness planning greatly aided Missouri citizens in 2011, check out the Special Storm Edition of MPCA’s newsletter,The Health Center
2009: Southeast Missouri Health Network-(New Madrid): On January 26th -28th a storm that began about 6 p.m. on the 26th ended on the 28th with ice, sleet and snow accumulations of 8 inches or more across a large area. At the peak, almost 200,000 people were without power in the Bootheel. Thousands of Southeast Missouri residents struggled to find ways to generate heat to their homes and provide light. Hundreds of schools and businesses closed either because of a lack of power or impassable roads. New Madrid County reported a need for generators and food and Scott County reported that 80 percent of residents lacked power and that the county needed assistance sheltering animals. Several buildings were damaged throughout the area as awnings fell and rooftops collapsed. In Scott County, a minor train derailment was reported with no injuries but wiped out five miles of electric poles and lines.
To help residents cope with the outages, warming centers were opened throughout the region, one of which was Semo Health Network’s Wellness Center. With cots and materials purchased two years ago with Hospital Preparedness Funds, Semo was able to provide 25 beds within the Fitness Center. Since showers were available, many residents used the facility to take a hot shower and fill containers with water.
2009-H1N1 Outbreak. The FQHCs have recently tested their emergency management plans with the current H1N1 public health threat. The FQHCs implemented their emergency management plans and working with their local public health departments, received updated information and some of the FQHCs received antivirals from the MO SNS stockpile. The MPCA coordinate an MPCA Crisis Communication Plan to provide updated information to the MPCA ERPP Task Force members.
The MPCA and Missouri’s health centers are appreciative of the continual support of the Health Services Resources Administration and DHSS. While each health center fits uniquely into their regional response plan, each is equally committed to strengthening the emergency response system for Missourians.
Emergency Management Resources:
Federal Emergency Management Agency: http://www.fema.gov/
National Incident Management System (NIMS) and Incident Command System (ICS) Learning Module
- ICS 100, Introduction to the Incident Command System, introduces the Incident Command System (ICS) and provides the foundation for higher level ICS training. This course describes the history, features and principles, and organizational structure of the Incident Command System. It also explains the relationship between ICS and the National Incident Management System (NIMS). http://training.fema.gov/EMIWeb/Is/is100A.asp
- ICS 200 is designed to enable personnel to operate efficiently during an incident or event within the Incident Command System (ICS). ICS-200 provides training on and resources for personnel who are likely to assume a supervisory position within the ICS.
The Emergency Management Institute developed ICS its ICS courses collaboratively with: http://training.fema.gov/emiweb/is/is200a.asp
- IS-700.a NIMS An Introduction. This course introduces and overviews the National Incident Management System (NIMS). NIMS provides a consistent nationwide template to enable all government, private-sector, and nongovernmental organizations to work together during domestic incidents. http://training.fema.gov/emiweb/is/is700a.asp
- IS-800.B National Response Framework, An Introduction. The course introduces participants to the concepts and principles of the National Response Framework. http://training.fema.gov/emiweb/is/is800b.asp
HRSA/BPHC Emergency Preparedness PINS:
- Health Center Emergency Management Program Expectations: http://bphc.hrsa.gov/policiesregulations/policies/pdfs/pin200715.pdfhttp://www.nachc.com/EM-Policy.cfm
- Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) Coverage for Health Center Program Grantees Responding to Emergencies: http://bphc.hrsa.gov/policiesregulations/policies/pdfs/pin200716.pdf
Center for Disease and Prevention Emergency Preparedness: http://www.bt.cdc.gov/
OSHA Emergency Preparedness: http://www.osha.gov/SLTC/emergencypreparedness/
Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services Emergency Preparedness: http://health.mo.gov/emergencies/
Missouri State Emergency Management Agency: http://sema.dps.mo.gov/
- State of Missouri Hazard Analysis: http://sema.dps.mo.gov/newspubs/publications/hazard_analysis.asp
National Association of Community Health Centers: http://www.nachc.org/hc-emergency-management.cfm
March 13, 2012. Missouri Statewide Tornado Drill. http://sema.dps.mo.gov/
April 3 – 6, 2012. 24th Annual Missouri Emergency Management Conference conducted by MO State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA): http://www.cvent.com/events/24th-annual-missouri-emergency-management-conference/event-summary-c3316c1859324f4491f58fecba33ee43.aspx
May 21 – 25, 2012. The 2012 Integrated Medical, Public Health, Preparedness and Response Training Summit is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). http://www.integratedtrainingsummit.org/about_the_summit.php