Emergency Preparedness:
Planning Could Save More than Lives

Disasters can occur anywhere at any time, and can leave a huge impact on a community or in some cases an entire country. We do not seek these disasters; they find us. We cannot run. We cannot hide. However, we can prepare ourselves ahead of time with the appropriate resources, and knowledge before disaster strikes. Planning can go a long way in the event of a disaster, and can help save more than people?s lives, which has brought attention to the following questions:
Which Emergency Management Components could be Useful in such a Large Catastrophe?
What Resources would be required in a Disaster, and how would Teams be Setup?
What types of Healthcare would be required in a Large Catastrophic Event?
What are some Considerations Requesting Agencies needs to Consider?
The fact that natural disasters strike without warning centers its attention on these questions.
Which Emergency Management Components could be Useful in such a Large Catastrophe?
Emergency management consists of four different levels when responding to a natural disaster: hazard mitigation, disaster preparedness, emergency response, and disaster recovery (Miller, 2010). All of these areas would be useful in the event of a natural disaster. Hazard mitigation solely focuses on stopping disasters before they happen. Something as simple as acquiring the appropriate knowledge could help to save people?s lives. For instance, if people only knew that a receding ocean floor means a tsunami is well on its way could have prevented mass casualties across several countries (National Geographic News, 2005).
Disaster preparedness helps put the plan of action in place to ensure a rapid recovery (Miller, 2010). Disaster preparedness involves planning, and limiting any potential damage. Preparing ahead of time presents a list of procedures, plans, and resources that can be followed when disaster strikes (Miller, 2010). The third level of emergency management is emergency response, and begins when the disaster occurs (Miller, 2010). Emergency response involves assessing the situation, securing the areas, evacuating people from their homes, helping individuals seek shelter, and providing injured victims with professional medical care. The final stage of emergency management is disaster recovery, which involves repairing a community back to normal, and begins as soon as the disaster is over (Miller, 2010). Utilizing all of the emergency management components during a natural disaster will limit the possibilities of casualties, and minimize damage that may occur to a community or country.
What Resources would be required for a Disaster, and how would Teams be Setup?
Supplies and resources are very crucial to have when responding to any natural disaster. Supplies such as, clean water, food, flashlights, batteries, first aid kits, and personal hygiene products are only to mention a few. It is highly recommended to have enough supplies to last the duration of 72 hours, until additional resources arrive at the scene. Other resources needed may include healthcare workers, public safety workers, National Guard, equipment, and additional personnel. Teams responding to a large disaster in the U.S. would be coordinated through the incident command system at the local level. The ultimate goal of ICS is to coordinate and combine management efforts that will assist agencies responding to a disaster. This system initializes teamwork in a more systematic approach (Miller, 2010). The goal is to get everyone to work together as a team adjusting to new situations throughout, and to communicate effectively and clearly on all levels.
This system is widely versatile, and allows arrangement of resources, equipment, and personnel in an organized fashion. Typically, it has five functional areas including Command, Operations, Planning, Logistics, and Finance/Administration (Miller, 2010). An incident with a massive impact, such as a Tsunami would require use of all of these functional areas. The incident command system allows a local community to tailor the specific needs of the incident, and has the capabilities of doing many different things at once.
What types of Healthcare would be required in a Large Catastrophic Event?
People that are involved in the healthcare field are huge assets when it comes to responding to a natural disaster. These workers are key components to saving people?s lives, helping victims seek safety, and making sure victims receive appropriate medical care if injured. Types of healthcare for a large catastrophic event include but are not limited to doctors, surgeons, nurses, sonographers, paramedics, public safety workers, hazmat, social workers, psychologist, triage, and temporary infrastructure of medical facilities. All of