Hospital Preparedness for Weapons of Mass Destruction Incidents: An Initial Assessment

Tzong-luen Wang, Huei-Tsair Chen, Hang Chang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

To elucidate hospital preparedness for weapons of mass destruction (WMD), we performed an initial assessment in the emergency response hospitals in Taipei. Interviews of hospital personnel were performed in 10 hospitals. Data collected included level of preparedness, mass decontamination capabilities, training of hospital staff, and facility security capabilities. No respondents believed their sites were fully prepared to handle a biologic incident, 70% (7/10) believed they were not prepared to manage a chemical weapons incident, and 80% believed they were unprepared for a radio-nuclear incident. Were a WMD incident to occur, 50% of respondents stated a single-room decontamination process would be set up. WMD preparedness had been incorporated into hospital response plans by 40% (4/10) of the institutions. Fifty percent (5/10) believed their emergency department could manage 20 to 50 casualties at once. No facility had stockpiled any medications for WMD treatment. All facilities had established networks of communication. No hospital has
prepared media statements specific to WMD. Thirty percent (3/10) stated that their hospital staff had some training in WMD event management. All reported need for WMD-specific training but
identified obstacles to achieving this. Sixty percent (6/10) of hospitals had a facility security plan, and 20% were able to perform a so-called isolation plan. None had awareness regarding the threat of a secondary device. Hospitals in this sample do not appear to be prepared to handle WMD events, especially in areas such as mass decontamination, mass medical response, and awareness among health care professionals, health communications, and facility security.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)74-79
JournalAnnals of Disaster Medicine
Volume2
Publication statusPublished - 2004

Fingerprint

Weapons of Mass Destruction
Decontamination
Chemical Hazard Release
Hospital Personnel
Health Communication
Weapons
Health Facilities
Radio
Hospital Emergency Service
Emergencies

Keywords

  • WMD
  • Disaster
  • Response
  • Preparedness

Cite this

Hospital Preparedness for Weapons of Mass Destruction Incidents : An Initial Assessment. / Wang, Tzong-luen ; Chen, Huei-Tsair; Chang, Hang.

In: Annals of Disaster Medicine, Vol. 2, 2004, p. 74-79.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Wang, Tzong-luen ; Chen, Huei-Tsair ; Chang, Hang. / Hospital Preparedness for Weapons of Mass Destruction Incidents : An Initial Assessment. In: Annals of Disaster Medicine. 2004 ; Vol. 2. pp. 74-79.
@article{f9c3e97aa18b4e16bd8b84c6fe5c3dba,
title = "Hospital Preparedness for Weapons of Mass Destruction Incidents: An Initial Assessment",
abstract = "To elucidate hospital preparedness for weapons of mass destruction (WMD), we performed an initial assessment in the emergency response hospitals in Taipei. Interviews of hospital personnel were performed in 10 hospitals. Data collected included level of preparedness, mass decontamination capabilities, training of hospital staff, and facility security capabilities. No respondents believed their sites were fully prepared to handle a biologic incident, 70{\%} (7/10) believed they were not prepared to manage a chemical weapons incident, and 80{\%} believed they were unprepared for a radio-nuclear incident. Were a WMD incident to occur, 50{\%} of respondents stated a single-room decontamination process would be set up. WMD preparedness had been incorporated into hospital response plans by 40{\%} (4/10) of the institutions. Fifty percent (5/10) believed their emergency department could manage 20 to 50 casualties at once. No facility had stockpiled any medications for WMD treatment. All facilities had established networks of communication. No hospital hasprepared media statements specific to WMD. Thirty percent (3/10) stated that their hospital staff had some training in WMD event management. All reported need for WMD-specific training butidentified obstacles to achieving this. Sixty percent (6/10) of hospitals had a facility security plan, and 20{\%} were able to perform a so-called isolation plan. None had awareness regarding the threat of a secondary device. Hospitals in this sample do not appear to be prepared to handle WMD events, especially in areas such as mass decontamination, mass medical response, and awareness among health care professionals, health communications, and facility security.",
keywords = "WMD, Disaster, Response, Preparedness",
author = "Tzong-luen Wang and Huei-Tsair Chen and Hang Chang",
year = "2004",
language = "English",
volume = "2",
pages = "74--79",
journal = "Annals of Disaster Medicine",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Hospital Preparedness for Weapons of Mass Destruction Incidents

T2 - An Initial Assessment

AU - Wang, Tzong-luen

AU - Chen, Huei-Tsair

AU - Chang, Hang

PY - 2004

Y1 - 2004

N2 - To elucidate hospital preparedness for weapons of mass destruction (WMD), we performed an initial assessment in the emergency response hospitals in Taipei. Interviews of hospital personnel were performed in 10 hospitals. Data collected included level of preparedness, mass decontamination capabilities, training of hospital staff, and facility security capabilities. No respondents believed their sites were fully prepared to handle a biologic incident, 70% (7/10) believed they were not prepared to manage a chemical weapons incident, and 80% believed they were unprepared for a radio-nuclear incident. Were a WMD incident to occur, 50% of respondents stated a single-room decontamination process would be set up. WMD preparedness had been incorporated into hospital response plans by 40% (4/10) of the institutions. Fifty percent (5/10) believed their emergency department could manage 20 to 50 casualties at once. No facility had stockpiled any medications for WMD treatment. All facilities had established networks of communication. No hospital hasprepared media statements specific to WMD. Thirty percent (3/10) stated that their hospital staff had some training in WMD event management. All reported need for WMD-specific training butidentified obstacles to achieving this. Sixty percent (6/10) of hospitals had a facility security plan, and 20% were able to perform a so-called isolation plan. None had awareness regarding the threat of a secondary device. Hospitals in this sample do not appear to be prepared to handle WMD events, especially in areas such as mass decontamination, mass medical response, and awareness among health care professionals, health communications, and facility security.

AB - To elucidate hospital preparedness for weapons of mass destruction (WMD), we performed an initial assessment in the emergency response hospitals in Taipei. Interviews of hospital personnel were performed in 10 hospitals. Data collected included level of preparedness, mass decontamination capabilities, training of hospital staff, and facility security capabilities. No respondents believed their sites were fully prepared to handle a biologic incident, 70% (7/10) believed they were not prepared to manage a chemical weapons incident, and 80% believed they were unprepared for a radio-nuclear incident. Were a WMD incident to occur, 50% of respondents stated a single-room decontamination process would be set up. WMD preparedness had been incorporated into hospital response plans by 40% (4/10) of the institutions. Fifty percent (5/10) believed their emergency department could manage 20 to 50 casualties at once. No facility had stockpiled any medications for WMD treatment. All facilities had established networks of communication. No hospital hasprepared media statements specific to WMD. Thirty percent (3/10) stated that their hospital staff had some training in WMD event management. All reported need for WMD-specific training butidentified obstacles to achieving this. Sixty percent (6/10) of hospitals had a facility security plan, and 20% were able to perform a so-called isolation plan. None had awareness regarding the threat of a secondary device. Hospitals in this sample do not appear to be prepared to handle WMD events, especially in areas such as mass decontamination, mass medical response, and awareness among health care professionals, health communications, and facility security.

KW - WMD

KW - Disaster

KW - Response

KW - Preparedness

UR - http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.596.1092&rep=rep1&type=pdf

M3 - Article

VL - 2

SP - 74

EP - 79

JO - Annals of Disaster Medicine

JF - Annals of Disaster Medicine

ER -