A group of 20 people participated in an Ebola Readiness Drill on Tuesday, December 16 at Hudson Hospital & Clinic. They were involved at various levels, including Charge Nurse, Registration, Volunteers, Hudson Hospital Infection Prevention and Emergency Management and Management Council, Emergency Center staff, Emergency Physician Michael Zwank, MD, and EVS. Also participating were staff from St. Croix County Public Health, Wisconsin Department of Health and St. Croix EMS. “We also had observers from Baldwin Medical Center, Amery Hospital and Lakeview Hospital. Regions Infectious Disease Department was also involved,” said Darren VanBlaricom, Emergency Preparedness Coordinator, Amery Hospital & Clinic.
“The objective was to test our Ebola Readiness Plan, specifically the patient mechanics and PPE readiness,” said VanBlaricom. “We also drilled our Surge plans, Lockdown and Incident Command. The drill focused specifically on working patient progress from presentation, to transfer. This drill also showed us some great strengths and several areas that we plan to tweak in our plans to make them even more efficient.”
This is the 2nd of four Valley Hospital drills. Lakeview had a similar drill last Thursday. Amery and Westfields will be participating in early January. “We included Lakeview and Hudson first to allow us to satisfy our Joint Commission requirements for the second half of 2014,” stated VanBlaricom. There are currently no Ebola cases in the USA, but hospitals are continuing rigorous training and preparation.
Hudson is very well prepared. VanBlaricom said all appropriate staff have been trained and developed all policies. This drill is was the next step in the progression of readiness. “We are working as a team from the Valley along with our partners at all Health Partners facilities on organizational preparedness and policies,” he said. ”At Hudson, as well as across the Valley, we are confident that we more prepared than many of our neighbors. In the next week we will pull exercise leaders together and develop an after action report and improvement plan.”