Tsunami simulation exercise for Health Sector

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CAY HILL – On May 16th, a simulation exercise was organized for ESF 6 by the Ministry of VSA and the Association of Netherlands Municipalities (VNG), with support of IHE Delft. The 6th Emergency Support Function (ESF) is in charge of the health sector during disasters and crises.

ESF 6 was confronted with a computer based scenario of a tsunami developed by IHE Delft within the European Commission funded PEARL project and were given insight in the consequences and dilemmas that need to be addressed in the situation of a crisis. Step by step the participants were taken in the different phases of the scenario in order to clarify the different roles and responsibilities. The table top focused on decision-making and communication processes and the strategic management of healthcare institutions during crisis situations and with chain partners.

The table top (a simulation-workshop) was a follow-up to the workshop of March 28th.  The input gathered by the first workshop in March and the specific material developed afterwards were tested in this table top.

Besides giving insights in the roles and responsibilities, Lianne van Driel, disaster coordinator of the Ambulance Service of Brabant in the Netherlands and attached to the recovery project of VNG International, developed a concrete task chart for ESF 6; a checklist to support analysing the required incident information and to define action.

Following this table top, the information that has been gathered by testing in this table top will be further used to improve the specific material developed and strengthen the processes of disaster management preparedness.

ESF6 is made up of health agencies that all aid in the achievement of the roles and responsibilities of the group, as listed in the Landsbesluit Rampenplan St. Maarten. These supporting agencies consist of Sint Maarten Medical Centre, White Yellow Cross Foundation, Pharmacist Association, WIMA, General Practitioners, SLS Laboratory, Red Cross Foundation, WIEMS (Windward Islands Emergency Medical Services), Ambulance Services, Mental Health Foundation, VSA, Preventive health department.

For more information please contact VNG International: vng-international@vng.nl; +31703738401