Blog

Handling a Medical Pandemic With Emergency Management Software

Industries
Emergency Medical Services, Medical Professionals

Tools
OnCall, Alerts, Instant Teleconference, Blueprints & Maps, Command Hub, IVR Builder, Live Survey, Recall

4 min read

As of 5:09AM, you've received word that a highly contagious virus was diagnosed at a local hospital and reports of more cases have come flooding in.

Panic and tensions are on the rise, prompting your city to activate its emergency operations center (EOC), and it's your job to combat an enemy you can't even see. Everyone from your social media coordinator to your local law enforcement official turn to you.

On a whiteboard, you write out a four-phase plan:

1. Assemble Team

2. Alert and Secure Citizens

3. Triage Critical Infrastructure and Resources

4. Regroup Field Teams

You activated your emergency management software, EmergHub, and prepare for phase one.

Phase One: Assemble Your Team

Your first objective is the most important – connecting and assembling the leaders of critical infrastructure entities such as medical directors, police chiefs, telecommunication providers, utility representatives, and more.

Using the OnCall and Alerts modules, you send out a code red alert via email, SMS, and voice to your essential personnel contact list directing them to the EMO building or, if unable, to find a secure location and hunker down. You also send a general broadcast out to any additional staff and personnel you may need.

With the OnCall module, you reach out to those who are off-duty while charting out the positions you need to fill the most.

As you track the responses in real time, those who are able to make it to the EOC arrive while those who reach secure locations respond that they are safe.

With the spreading illness, the people who maintain your city's interior will become unavailable and mass hysteria could cause rioting. Conveniences such as telecommunications, electricity, and even water may be cut off. It's a race against time and you have critical assets, not to mention an entire population, to secure.

You track and note those who have not responded and use the Instant Teleconference to dial out to those who can't be physically present, saving valuable time. The module automatically tracks the attendance of those dialing in while the call is recorded for later playback.

As everyone joins the call, you activate the Blueprints and Maps module and a layout of your city is updated with the locations of any off-site team members alongside pre-created templates for all critical infrastructure providers. From the Command Hub module, you have a comprehensive summary of the situation so far with more information being added as it becomes available.

It's time for phase two.

Phase Two: Alert and Secure Citizens

Restlessness is quickly building in the downtown core and is worming its way into residential areas. Before the situation worsens, you need to get out as much information as possible to citizens with the tips they need to stay safe, healthy, and informed.

Using content from your communications team and the Alerts module, you send out an emergency notification via SMS, voice, email, and fax simultaneously and have members of your team monitor the open and response rates in real-time.

Knowing that the population will have questions and will require more information, you have members of your in-house team set up an emergency call tree using the IVR Builder module. Releasing the phone number with the alert, individuals can now call in to find out about available resources, care for those affected by the illness, and general safety.

Now that you've established communications, you need to discover the status of critical resources and assets.

Phase Three: Triage Critical Infrastructure and Resources

The next tool in your emergency management arsenal is Live Survey – your go-to module for gaining information and opinions fast. Having contacts in hospitals, police stations, fire stations, electrical depots and more, you send one question over via SMS, voice, and email with three potential answers:

What is your status?

A). Available

B). Regrouping

C). Require Assistance

As responses come in, you tie the results to locations of the contacts on the map to highlight their status and those who do not answer.

The next step is sending out additional questions targeted at those who did respond, asking specific details such as hospital bed capacity, availability to assist others, additional resources needed, and more.

You learn key information that will aid in your continued strategy:

1. Two out of the three hospitals have overflowing emergency rooms with low bed capacity

2. A series of car accidents caused by ill citizens have resulted in power loss near one of the hospitals, and local powerline technicians are ill

3. Fires have broken out at some residences due to panic

As each answer comes in, it is integrated into your working map with each location displaying its status and the information is compiled into Command Hub.

You begin to see that there are still critical issues demanding your attention, both in your hospitals and on the streets. To resolve them however, you'll need the right people for the job – it's time for phase four.

Phase Four: Regroup Field Teams

While you've already gathered critical team members via Alerts and OnCall, there are teams of trained specialists who can operate in the field. Your next priority is securing the resources you require for the highest chance of success and you'll need teams with unique skills sets to do the job.

Opening the Recall module, you select the teams you believe will be most effective in finding, securing, and protecting valuable assets.

Recall One: Electrical Restoration

Having power out at a hospital isn't ideal at the best of times, let alone during a pandemic. You recall available powerline technicians and firefighters with specialized training in the vehicle rescue and electrical firefighting training.

As they reach the location, Live Surveys are sent out asking for the estimated time of restoration, so the answer can be uploaded into the system and Map.

Recall Two: Patient Relocation

With two of three hospitals overflowing with patients, you send out a recall to EHS and intensive care staff to assign ambulance transport to the third hospital with additional doctors and nursing staff. This will not only take pressure off the other hospitals, but allow more time for patient care and capacity triaging.

Recall Three: Peacekeeping

While seeing teams respond may help relieve some of the unrest, there will still be high levels of panic present as people stock up on foods, water, and medicine. By recalling officers with specific training in councilling, negotiations, and resolution, you can disperse these officials with other groups to help facilitate a level of order and keep a pulse on the communities in and around your city.

As you begin to set up staging areas and on-site medical stations, you receive word that more help is on the way.

Congratulations!

You've managed to secure your city, it's population, and have built the foundation for recovery.

While this may be a hypothetical scenario, the technology used in it is no fantasy. EmergHub is the world's first all-in-one emergency management software that can enable you to respond to any emerging crisis efficiently and effectively. Whether it is communicating with populations, directing field teams, or gathering the vital personnel you need, EmergHub the ultimate tool for responding to any crisis.

To learn more, visit our EmergHub page or send an email to sales@simplycast.com.

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