Tip of the Week: Follow these eight steps to design effective emergency exercises
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January 27, 2011
How do you create emergency exercises and have them be effective? Marge McFarlane, PhD, MS(ENPH), CHSP, HEM, MEP, consultant at The Greeley Company, gives eight steps on how to make the planning process easy. The first step is to base your emergency exercises on your needs assessment. Here’s an excerpt from the first step, published in the January issue of Briefings on Hospital Safety:
Look at your hazard vulnerability assessments and previous exercises to determine what you need to test or retest, McFarlane says. A hospital’s after-action reports, in which emergency exercises are assessed, always identify areas for improvement.
Take a look at any disasters or emergencies that occurred at your facility and consider what went well and what didn’t, she says. This could be a flood, a tornado, a hurricane, or an ice storm. Also, look at any new equipment your facility bought and think about incorporating it into a drill to test the training you’ve provided to staff, she says. One purpose of conducting exercises is to validate your plans, policies, and procedures, as well as your training, McFarlane says.
Visit Briefings on Hospital Safety for more of the steps.