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Archive for the ‘Disaster Planning’ Category

Webinar Series: Beneficial Practices for Improving Biosurveillance

Friday, April 4th, 2014

*** Webinar Series: Beneficial Practices for Improving Biosurveillance***

Thursday, April 24th, 2:00-3:00pm ET: Outbreaks

Thursday, June 5th, 2:00-3:00pm ET: Prioritizing Your Biosurveillance Enhancements

This webinar series brings to light key findings of a 2012-13 North Carolina Preparedness and Emergency Response Research Center project and report on enhancing biosurveillance practice for situational awareness during a public health emergency.  Webinar series:

Report: Improving Public Health Preparedness: Strengthening Biosurveillance Systems for Enhanced Situational Awareness:

Webinar: Response and Recovery during an Environmental Disaster: Learning from the Elk River Chemical Spill

Friday, April 4th, 2014

National Association of County and City Health (NACCHO); American Association of Poison Control Centers (AAPCC); and the Association of Public Health Laboratories (APHL)

Tuesday, April 22nd , 2:30 – 4:00 pm ET

On January 9th, 2014, Freedom Industries spilled 10,000 gallons of toxic 4-methylcyclohexane methanol (MCHM) and an unknown amount of polyglycol ether (PPH), into the Elk River in West Virginia, leaving nearly 300,000 residents from nine counties without drinking water. The response to this event required the coordination of many organizations at the local, state, and federal level.  This webinar will explore the roles of local public health, poison control, and public health laboratory officials in the response; to reflect on the challenges, systems, and practices that led to the incident; and discuss ways to improve upon future responses and prevent similar incidents from occurring.

Speakers in this webinar will include: Dr. Rahul Gupta, Health Officer and Executive Director, Kanawha-Charleston Health Department; Martha A. McElfresh, West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources, Office of Laboratory Services, CT Coordinator Threat Preparedness and Response Section; and Elizabeth Scharman, Managing Director, West Virginia Poison Control Center

Just a reminder that the National Library of Medicine created a record for MCHM in the Hazardous Substances Data Bank (HSDB) in response to this spill.  The March 13, 2014 Disaster Information Specialist Program Call on accessing information on chemicals and chemical hazards included a discussion of the process involved in the development of HSDB record.

HSDB Record:

Recording and Slides from March 13 DIS call

Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness

Friday, April 4th, 2014

The journal “Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness” is publishing a special issue in 2014 on the role of communication in public health preparedness measures and response to pandemics, with particular reference to infectious disease outbreaks. Topics include: crisis preparedness framework, tools for outbreak communication, information management and access, mass media/social media, and more.

Deadline: June 30, 2014

Full instructions on how to prepare a submission can be viewed at:

Please contact if you have any questions regarding submission.

The aftermath: coping with disasters

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014

A common thread in many disaster incidents is the immediate and long-term impact on the emotional well-being of survivors and disaster responders. From a mental health perspective there are many potential responses, including PTSD. Children, teens and adults may have very different reactions to trauma and express their reactions in different ways.

Anniversaries of events such as the West, TX explosion, Boston Marathon bombing and the May 2013 tornadoes are often accompanied by extensive media coverage and can re-trigger strong reactions. Individual grief and loss can linger for years at the same time communities may be celebrating their resilience and ability to commemorate and re-build.

This email is a reminder that NLM and others collect or provide many resources for information on disaster-related mental health issues. Of course, online health information is only one small piece of the range of services that must also include local, in-person medical care, counseling, support groups, comfort and security, and strategies for recovery.

For those who are suffering whether from recent events, last year or from long ago, our thoughts are with you.

–DIMRC staff

Disaster Distress Helpline

From the National Library of Medicine:

Topics from MedlinePlus (National Library of Medicine) for the general public:

MedlinePlus en español

Disaster Apps and Mobile Optimized Web Pages: Psychological Health Tools

Submitted by Cindy Love
Disaster Information Management Research Center
Specialized Information Services Division
National Library of Medicine
National Institutes of Health
Bethesda, MD 20892-5467

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