In a Moment's Notice: Surge Capacity for Terrorist Bombings

In a Moment's Notice: Surge Capacity for Terrorist Bombings

by National Center for Injury Prevention and Control
     
 
Explosive devices and high-velocity firearms are the terrorists’ weapons of choice. The devastation wrought in two European capitals, Madrid and London, demonstrate the impact that can be achieved by detonating explosives among densely packed civilians. In an instant, an explosion can wreak havoc—producing numerous casualties with complex, technically

Overview

Explosive devices and high-velocity firearms are the terrorists’ weapons of choice. The devastation wrought in two European capitals, Madrid and London, demonstrate the impact that can be achieved by detonating explosives among densely packed civilians. In an instant, an explosion can wreak havoc—producing numerous casualties with complex, technically challenging injuries not commonly seen after natural disasters such as floods, tornadoes, or hurricanes. Because many patients self-evacuate after a terrorist attack, and prehospital care may be difficult to coordinate, hospitals near the scene can expect to receive a large influx—or surge—of victims after a terrorist strike. This rapid surge of victims typically occurs within minutes, exemplified by the Madrid bombings where the closest hospital received 272 patients in 2.5 hours. Such a surge differs dramatically from the gradual influx of patients after an outbreak of infectious disease or an environmental emergency such as a heat wave, which can last several days to weeks afterwards. In addition, injuries to workers involved in recovery procedures can lead to a secondary wave in surge. The key question is this: Can hospitals meet the challenge?

This document, which is the result of the expert panel meetings, reflects the opinions and recommendations of the experts. It includes a description of system-wide and discipline-specific challenges as well as recommended solutions to address these challenges. The proposed solutions for the discipline-specific challenges have been incorporated into easy to use templates that can assist various disciplines in managing surge needs for injuries. The needs and resources of each community must be considered to effectively plan for a surge of patients into an already overburdened health care system. Admittedly, community resources are not specific to handling casualties of explosives, but the likelihood of this threat and the sudden demand it would place on the health care system make it imperative to manage deficiencies in surge capacity now—not when crisis strikes—and to do so in an aggressive, but thoughtful manner.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
2940013500990
Publisher:
1001 Property Solutions LLC
Publication date:
11/20/2011
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
9 MB

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