Certified Nursing Assistant/Nurse Aide RN - Registered Nurse LPN - Licensed Practical Nurse Emergency Management Direct Care Staff Home Health Aide Caregiver

Emergency Management

The Quadrennial Homeland Security Review Report in 2010 stated, “All of the most advanced, high-tech tools in the world will not transform our security unless we change our way of thinking, the way we approach individual, family, and community preparedness, the way we organize, train, and equip our professional capabilities and the way all of the elements interact.” The preparation of individuals, families, homes, and businesses for unexpected disasters is a civic virtue, and cannot be accomplished without ensuring the safety of the responders and their families who serve those communities. By ensuring that their families are safe and protected, responders can turn their full attention to the life-saving missions of the rest of the community.

Organizational preparedness refers to the preparation of first responders and their agencies to react to a catastrophic disaster. These types of disasters affect the entire community, disrupting the day-to-day activities of agencies of all types, including those of first responders.

First responders have a responsibility to provide essential services to respond to the impacts of the disaster on the community at large, prevent further damage where possible, and serve as a steady presence in the face of such events. In order to be able to provide these essential services, responders must take many of the same preparedness steps as other members of the community. Without taking the appropriate steps to prepare themselves and their families in advance of a disaster, responders will be hindered in their ability to perform their jobs when a disaster strikes, and will instead be focused on personal and family safety. Appropriate advance planning lessens the burden on responders during a response, enabling them to devote more of their mental resources to the task of securing the community.

Over the last few years, numerous surveys have assessed how first responders in various disciplines and jurisdictions would react following an incident, and what actions could help direct or change those behaviors. A review of these surveys indicates that, in many cases, there is still much work to be done to prepare agencies, departments, and first responders for a disaster response.

These studies reinforce the importance of organizational preparedness. There is a clear need to offer a way in which agencies, departments, their employees, and their families can be better equipped during a disaster so that family responsibilities and safety do not deter personnel from responding to their operational responsibilities.

(SOURCE http://www.ready.gov/sites/default/files/documents/files/RRToolkit.pdf)