In this issue of the ASPR TRACIE Exchange, we highlight lessons learned, trends, and future initiatives shared by support service staff in response to mass casualty incidents (MCIs). The professionals we interviewed represent the nutritional, pharmaceutical, and blood supply fields, and shared their experiences with specific incidents (primarily mass shootings and hurricanes). They also discussed trends in their respective fields and how they are anticipating and planning to overcome challenges, should another MCI occur. We hope that these real-life experiences shared by your colleagues across the nation help you plan (and adjust existing plans) for no-notice incidents.
Dr. Denis FitzGerald, Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary and Acting Director, Office of Emergency Management and Medical Operations, authored the foreword for this issue, highlighting the National Health Security Strategy and the importance of collaboration with traditional partners and those behind the scenes who work tirelessly to ensure effective disaster response.
The articles in this issue include insights from a broad range of authors:
- Lee Tincher and Jo Mill from Meals for All share how hospital disaster nutrition planning and response can save lives and how this unique and often under-recognized aspect of preparedness and response has evolved over the years, particularly in light of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Emergency Preparedness Rule (EP Rule).
- Chandel Ashby, Liz Lambert, Julie Scott, and Crystal Stanley share how blood was requested and transported in the aftermath of the Aurora, CO, theater shooting.
- Ruth Sylvester from Americas Blood Centers shares challenges associated with the U.S. blood supply in general and surge events specifically.
- Al LAltrelli (UPMC Presbyterian) and Lynsee Knowlton (Sunrise Hospital) discuss their experiences supporting the hospital response to mass shootings in Pittsburgh and Las Vegas from a hospital pharmacy perspective.
- Nicole Louissaint from Healthcare Ready describes the changing landscape of pharmacies in disaster preparedness and response.
- Dr. John L. Hick summarizes the articles in this issue, highlights challenges facility support services may face during a disaster, and lists related planning considerations.
Access Issue 8 of The Exchange and download previous issues that address a variety of vital and timely topics.