Author Archives: jkatzburg

Check out our newest postings under the ‘Resources & Links’ Tab-Including important information for hurricane responders

General Disaster Response and Recovery Information

  • Tips for Survivors of a Disaster or Other Traumatic Event: Managing Stress—This SAMHSA tip sheet gives stress prevention and management tips for dealing with the effects of trauma, mass violence, or terrorism. It lists tips to relieve stress, describes how to know when to seek professional help, and provides accompanying resources. This tip sheet is also available in Spanish at
  • Psychological First Aid (PFA)—Developed jointly by the National Center for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and the National Child Traumatic Stress Network, PFA is an evidence-informed modular approach for assisting people in the immediate aftermath of disaster and terrorism: to reduce initial distress, and to foster short- and long-term adaptive functioning.
  • Effects of Traumatic Stress After Mass Violence, Terror, or Disaster—This web page from the National Center for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) describes the emotional, cognitive, physical, and interpersonal reactions that disaster survivors may experience and discusses potentially severe stress symptoms and PTSD, anxiety disorders, and depression. The page also provides information about how survivors can reduce their risk of psychological difficulties and recover from disaster stress.

Hurricane- and Flood-Specific Information

  • Hurricanes and Tropical Storms—The SAMHSA Disaster Distress Helpline provides information on who is most at risk for emotional distress from hurricanes and tropical storms and where to find disaster-related resources. Call 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746 Spanish Speakers Call 1-800-985-5990 and press “2” From the U.S., text Hablanos to 6674

Resources for Children, Youth, Parents and Other Caregivers, and Schools

Resources Focused on Older Adults

Resources for Disaster Responders

  • Disaster Mental Health for Responders: Key Principles, Issues and Questions—This Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) web page presents information that may be helpful to disaster survivors and first responders during and after a disaster. The page opens with guiding principles and also features survivor needs and common responses to disasters, signs that someone may need a mental health referral, common signs of stress among disaster responders, and examples of ways to care for yourself after a disaster.
  • Psychological First Aid: How You Can Support Well-Being in Disaster VictimsThis fact sheet by the National Child Traumatic Stress Network explains how disaster response workers can use Psychological First Aid to help people in distress after a disaster.

American Red Cross: Call for Health & Mental Health Professionals

Call for volunteers:


In response to Hurricane Harvey, the Direct Deployment Process (Through the American Red Cross) for qualified health and mental health professionals has been activated.

The link to Volunteer Connection on this page is a special entry point that should only be used by eligible health and mental health volunteers:

Once the Direct Deployment volunteers have completed their DRO assignment, their Volunteer Connection profile will be passed to their region.

Please share this widely with your colleagues.  The American Red Cross will be needing all hands on deck.

Hurricane Harvey

Our thoughts and prayers are with the residents of Texas as they brave the relentless onslaught of Hurricane Harvey. We thank all the emergency responders, including volunteers, for their heroic efforts to rescue so many individuals stranded by the floodwaters. We commend our fellow nurses working in Texas, whose current efforts under severe circumstances, accentuate the importance of having a well-trained and prepared nursing workforce, capable of responding to disasters.

Free Nursing CEUs

AGENCY FOR TOXIC SUBSTANCES & DISEASE REGISTRY (ATSDR)/CDC offers free courses along with continuing education credits* on topics related to disaster nursing. Visit the website at
Courses include Taking an Exposure History:

*Continuing Nursing Education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation (ANCC)

According to their website: ‘ATSDR Case Studies in Environmental Medicine (CSEM) are self-instructional, continuing-education primers designed to increase primary care providers’ knowledge of hazardous substances and aid in the evaluation of patients potentially exposed to hazardous substances. Each CSEM comes with additional companion products such as Grand Rounds in Environmental Medicine and Patient Education/Care Instruction Sheets.’

Emergency Preparedness for Every Emergency

Check out the CMS website which provides numerous resources and guidelines related to emergency preparedness in the United States

Below is a sample of what you will find on the website:


Enable Federal, State, Tribal, Regional, and local governmental agencies, and health care providers to respond to every emergency in a timely, collaborative, organized, and effective manner.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Survey and Certification Group (SCG) has developed this site to provide useful information to CMS Central and Regional Offices, State Survey Agencies (SAs), their State, Tribal, Regional, and local emergency management partners, and health care providers, for developing effective and robust emergency plans and responses.

This Web site provides information and tools, utilizing an “all hazards” approach for disruptive events such as:
• Pandemic flu (e.g., H1N1 influenza virus)
• Hurricanes
• Tornados
• Fires
• Earthquakes
• Power outages
• Chemical spills
• Nuclear or biological terrorist attack
• Etc.

This Web site provides “one-stop shopping” to obtain both mandated and voluntary emergency preparedness information and tools.

The Web site will be updated regularly to provide helpful guidance regarding issues such as:
• Clarifying the roles, responsibilities and actions of CMS Central and Regional Survey & Certification (S&C) Offices.
• Clarifying the roles, responsibilities, and actions of SAs.
• Effective emergency planning across all health care provider types to ensure the well-being of vulnerable populations – whether in long-term care, acute care, or community-based facilities — during a disruptive event.

Deadline for ARC Conference Abstracts Extended to August 31, 2017!

This year’s deadline for ARC Conference Call for Abstract submissions has been extended to August 31! Please go to to learn more and to submit.

Check out the updated 3-day Joint Conference agenda, including panel session descriptions and speakers, by visiting

2017 ARC Conference
Mark your calendar! This year’s Annual Conference—in conjunction with the National Healthcare Coalition Resource Center’s 6th Annual National Healthcare Coalition Preparedness Conference—will be held at the Sheraton San Diego Hotel & Marina on November 28-30.



The International Council of Nurses (ICN) Biennial Congress — Barcelona, Spain

Report on the International Council of Nurses (ICN) Biennial Congress in Barcelona, Spain

Mary Pat Couig, PhD, MPH, RN, FAAN

The International Council of Nurses (ICN) held its biennial Congress in Barcelona, Spain, 27 May – 1 June 2017. Founded in 1899, ICN is a federation of more than 130 national nurses associations and represents over 16 million nurses globally. ICN’s website is:

This year’s conference theme, Nurses at the Forefront Transforming Care, provided a framework for presentations, discussions, and posters on issues affecting nurses and patient care around the globe: health care systems, sustainable health care, conflicts and disasters, safety and quality in the workplace and professional practice and innovative policies. The full program can be found at:

On Monday 29 May, Mr. Ian Norton, Dr. Pilar Fernandez and Professor Aiko Yamamoto presented on disaster preparedness, response and resilience. Mr. Norton presented on the World Health Organization’s Emergency Medical Teams (EMT) Initiative. The EMT initiative assists organizations and member states to build infrastructure and strengthen health systems with quality approved medical teams in emergencies. This initiative is focused on helping countries develop their own teams who can respond quickly. The EMT website is:

Professor Yamamoto provided an update on the Disaster Nursing Global Leader Degree Program, a collaborative between 5 universities in Japan. The goal of the program is to develop global disaster nursing leaders to ensure human security. Professor Yamamoto gave an overview of the past achievements and future work in the areas of long-term recovery, community-based resiliency, comprehensive family oriented approaches, disaster ethics, and new practices. More information can be found at the website:

Congratulations to Ms. Annette Kennedy, ICN’s new president.


Photo: Tener Goodwin Veenema, PhD, MS, MPH, RN, FAAN and Mary Pat Couig, PhD, MPH, RN, FAAN. SADN poster presentation.

VEMEC Poster Recognized by AORN

The Association of periOperative Registered Nurses (AORN) recently highlighted the top five research abstracts that will be presented at AORN’s Global Surgical Conference & Expo (April 1-5 | Boston, MA) in a note entitled 5 Research Posters That Will Wow You!  Among those highlighted was VEMEC’s abstract Nurses as Leaders in Disaster Preparedness and Response – A Call to Action by lead author Anne “Belle” Griffin.  Congratulations to Anne “Belle” Griffin, a leader in the Society for the Advancement of Disaster Nursing, on this well-deserved recognition!  To read more about Belle’s abstract, the Call to Action, and VEMEC, please visit the VEMEC website.

National Disaster Nursing Leadership Meeting: Planning to Launch a New Organization

With U.S. numbers exceeding 3.1 million, registered nurses comprise the largest group of professionals in the healthcare workforce (Henry J. Kaiser Website, 2017, NACNEP (2009)). Research indicates that the nursing workforce is inadequately prepared to respond to major disasters (NACNEP (2009), Baack and Alfred (2013)). To begin addressing this capability shortfall, the Veterans Emergency Management Evaluation Center (VEMEC) seeks to advance the practice of disaster nursing, and in 2014 initiated a national Call to Action. As a result of VEMEC efforts, a group of subject matter experts held a series of meetings to develop a vision for the future of disaster nursing and to plan a workshop, which was attended by 70 participants, in an effort to further refine the vision and to identify the steps needed to achieve their goals (Veenema et al (2016)). Ongoing collective efforts culminated in plans to launch a new organization: Society for the Advancement of Disaster Nursing (SADN).

In December of 2016, the first national leadership planning meeting for SADN was held at the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing in Baltimore, MD. Presentations included summaries of the work to date of the five SADN workgroups (Policy, Practice, Education, Research, and Dissemination). The keynote speaker was Sally Philips, PhD, RN, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.sallyphilips2

Keynote Sally Philips, PhD, RN

Dr. Philips provided a critical perspective on the future role of nurses in disaster preparedness, response. and recovery for the near term.

We were also privileged to hear a talk by Paul B. Spiegel, MD, MPH, Professor, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, who gave a compelling presentation entitled ‘The Syrian Conflict and its effect on the future of Humanitarian Action’.

During the afternoon session, the meeting attendees broke into groups to develop key recommendations for SADN’s strategic plan and outline activities for each of the five SADN workgroups moving forward. Discussions also revolved around the newly forming society’s values as well as next steps, including formalizing SADN as a 501c3 nonprofit entity.dn-collage

Stay tuned for more exciting developments regarding our efforts to advance the practice of disaster nursing!


  1. Total Number of Professionally Active Nurses, The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation Webpage (,  Downloaded 2-7-17.
  2. National Advisory Council on Nurse Education and Practice (NACNEP), Challenges Facing the Nurse Workforce in a Changing Environment, Seventh Annual Report to Secretary of U. S. Department of Health and Human Services and the U.S. Congress, March 2009.
  3. Baack, S and Alfred, D, (2013). Nurses’ Preparedness and Perceived Competence in Managing Disasters. Journal of Nursing Scholarship, 45(3): 281-287
  4. Veenema, TG, Griffin, A, Gable, AR et al (2016). Nurses as Leaders in Disaster Preparedness and Response–A Call to Action. Journal of Nursing Scholarship, 48 (2):187-200.

The Advancing & Redefining Communities for Emergency Management (ARC) Conference – December 2016 – Washington, DC


Society for the Advancement of Disaster Nursing (SADN) was well represented at the ARC conference that took place in Washington, D.C. in December, 2016. Many of our leaders participated in the two day conference. An enthusiastic audience attended our excellent panel presentation during the breakout sessions. Aram Dobalian (Director, Veterans Emergency Management Evaluation Center (VEMEC) moderated the session entitled Nurses as Leaders in Disaster Preparedness and Response: A Call to Action.

SADN leaders who presented included:

Mary Pat Couig, Program Manager of Office of Nursing Services, US Department of Veterans Affairs

Anne Griffin, Senior Program Manager, Veterans Emergency Management Evaluation Center

Roberta Proffitt Lavin, Associate Dean for Academic Programs College of Nursing, University of Missouri–St Louis

Tener Goodwin Veenema, Associate Professor of School of Nursing, Johns Hopkins University; President and CEO, Tener Consulting Group LLC

According to the conference website:

“ARC Conference is an annual event for interdisciplinary professionals with in an interest in disaster/emergency planning and recovery efforts to:

  • Learn how to provide timely access to high-quality care in disasters and emergencies;
  • Participate in interactive sessions, plenaries, and workshops;
  • Identify gaps and sets priorities for the field of emergency management;
  • Discuss and share recommendations and lessons learned with peers and partners; and
  • Attend networking gatherings to expand professional networks.”

The 2017 ARC Conference will take place in San Diego, California

To learn more, visit the ARC conference website: ARC

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