SADN Dissemination Workgroup Presentation at American Public Health Association’s APHA 2017 Annual Meeting & Expo

Prepare to Tweet: Making Nurses Disaster-Ready

The SADN Dissemination Workgroup is presenting on its work to promote the Society for the Advancement of Disaster Nursing (SADN) at the American Public Health Association’s APHA 2017 Annual Meeting & Expo (Nov. 4 – Nov. 8) in Atlanta. If you are coming to these meetings, please join us at the Public Health Nursing Section Session:

4347.0: Disaster Preparation, Response, and Recovery

Tuesday, November 07, 201702:30 PM – 04:00 PM

Georgia World Congress Center – B309

To hear more about the accomplishments of the  SADN Dissemination Workgroup, come listen to the 3:30 presentation: ‘Prepare to Tweet: Making Nurses Disaster-Ready’ at this session. The advancement of disaster nursing, including activation of a new organization with national impact is an enormous and crucial undertaking. The Dissemination Workgroup’s efforts may serve as a model for advancement of large initiatives and newly formed organizations. 

 

 

A Thank You Note to Volunteers Who Support Disaster Response

A Thank You Note to Volunteers Who Support Disaster Response

By Anne “Belle” Griffin, MPH,BSN, RN

Clara Barton was 60 years old and working in the U.S. Patent Office in Washington DC when the U.S. Civil War broke out. Realizing the wounded soldiers needed early intervention, she gathered first aid supplies and volunteered herself to care for them on the front line of war. Over the next several years and despite many obstacles, Clara Barton was determined to assure that the U.S. would sign and commit to the Geneva Convention Treaty in 1881, establishing the American Red Cross with its mission to protect the sick and wounded during times of war.1 Today, there are 20,000 volunteer Red Cross nurses who are committed to serving in disaster response, health and safety instruction and program development.2

Recent disasters continue to present opportunities for the same kind of commitment. Hurricane Harvey recently caused overwhelming damage to 40 counties in south eastern Texas. Hurricanes Irma and Maria were right behind, wreaking havoc on the infrastructure of Florida, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Devastating fires in northern California followed. In less than a two-month period, the American Red Cross received over 5,000 new applications from health and mental health volunteers3. Active Red Cross volunteers have provided nearly 195,000 mental health and health services to support and care for those affected by each of the hurricanes and fires.4 Social media outlets provide evidence of the many nurses who have worked well beyond their obligation to support continuity of patient care.

It has now been three years since Veterans Emergency Management Evaluation Center invited 18 nursing leaders with disaster nursing expertise to develop strategies to assure our nursing workforce is prepared to respond to disaster.5 This effort evolved into the Society for the Advancement of Disaster Nursing (SADN) and a strong sense of volunteerism has driven its success. The initiative is expanding and the number of volunteers have more than doubled.

Whether it be in the field, in a hospital or in a classroom; SADN wishes to thank those who serve as volunteers and dedicate their time, expertise and energy to be of service to those who are impacted by random and devastating disasters.

1-http://www.redcross.org/about-us/who-we-are/history/clara-barton

2-http://www.redcross.org/about-us/who-we-are/history/nursing

3-http://www.redcross.org/take-a-class/lp/hurricane-harvey-health-professionals

4-http://www.redcross.org/news/article/Our-Response-to-Harvey-and-Irma

5- Veenema, T. G., Griffin, A., Gable, A. R., MacIntyre, L., Simons, R. A. D. M., Couig, M. P., … & Larson, E. (2016). Nurses as leaders in disaster preparedness and response—a call to action. Journal of Nursing Scholarship, 48(2), 187-200. Link to Abstract

 

Stop the Bleed

My Nursing Education

As nurses, we must be prepared for mass casualty incidents and know how to respond. It was good to see the people trained in first aid (firemen, prior military, nurses, and others) respond and help even as the shooter was still firing. Would you be prepared to stop the bleed of a person with a gunshot wound?

You can follow these easy steps, but it important to practice in advance. While there are videos online they do not replace hands-on training. If you want to be trained you can contact your local school of nursing, EMS, or Red Cross. You can purchase a stop the bleed kit on Amazon.com or through the American Red Cross. Just search “Stop the Bleed”.  If you are in the St. Louis area feel free to reach me at the University of Missouri – St. Louis, College of Nursing and I will be happy to…

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Now is the Time, Personal Preparedness Can’t Wait!

On August 25, 2017, Hurricane Harvey made landfall in Texas leading to catastrophic flooding in Houston and surrounding areas.  Less than two weeks later, Hurricane Irma slammed into the Caribbean and Florida, causing flooding, damage, and widespread power outages.  Most hospitals in the impacted areas sheltered-in-place requiring nurses and other critical staff to stay at the facilities for extended periods.

While these disasters had some advance warning, many aspects of the disaster were uncertain including the extent and location of flooding, power outages, etc. Other disasters, such as tornadoes or earthquakes, strike with little or no warning. Previous studies have found that lack of personal preparedness, concern/fear for family and pets, concern for the effect of the disaster on self and personal property, and transportation difficulties pose major barriers to disaster response. Although many agree that healthcare organizations should address the personal preparedness of their employees, little is known about the degree to which the U.S. nursing workforce is personally prepared to respond to disasters for extended periods of time.

The Society for the Advancement of Disaster Nursing believes personal preparedness of the nursing workforce is paramount. This week, SADN members will be hosting a presentation on personal preparedness at the Emergency Nurses 2017 Conference in St. Louis, MO (Details below).

Title: Now is the Time, Personal Preparedness Can’t Wait!
Date: Thursday, September 14, 2017
Presentation time 3:15 PM – 4:15 PM
Room: 267

We hope conference attendees will be able to join us for this session.

For nurses who are not attending this conference, we recommend you undertake the following steps to get prepared as soon as possible:

  1. Assemble disaster supplies kit for home, work, and car
  2. Create a family disaster plan. Your family may not be together if a disaster strikes, so it is important to know which types of disasters could affect your area and have a plan in place that addresses how you’ll contact one another and reconnect if separated. Tailor this plan to any special needs your family has, including care of pets.
  3. Practice and update your plan regularly, just like a fire drill.
  4. Familiarize yourself with your organization’s emergency operations plan and know your role if a disaster strikes.

See https://www.fema.gov/media-library-data/20130726-1549-20490-4633/areyouready_full.pdf for more information on becoming personally prepared.

Alicia Gable, MPH

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. http://store.samhsa.gov/shin/content/SMA13-4776/SMA13-4776.pdf This tip sheet is also available in Spanish at http://store.samhsa.gov/shin/content//SMA13-4776SPANISH/SMA13-4776SPANISH.pdf.
  • 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. http://www.ptsd.va.gov/professional/materials/manuals/psych-first-aid.asp
  • 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. http://www.ptsd.va.gov/professional/trauma/disaster-terrorism/stress-mv-t-dhtml.asp

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. http://www.samhsa.gov/find-help/disaster-distress-helpline/disaster-types/hurricanes 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. http://emergency.cdc.gov/mentalhealth/responders.asp
  • 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. http://www.cstsonline.org/assets/media/documents/CSTS_psychological_first_aid.pdf

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:  www.redcross.org/hurricane-harvey-health-professionals.

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.