202740 Designing community-based alternate care sites for pandemics and public health emergencies

Monday, November 9, 2009: 2:30 PM

Michael J. Reilly, DrPH, MPH, NREMT-P , Center for Disaster Medicine, New York Medical College, Valhalla, NY
David S. Markenson, MD , Center for Disaster Medicine, New York Medical College, School of Public Health, Valhalla, NY
Sherlita Amler, MD, MS , Putnam County Department Of Health, Brewster, NY
Introduction: Developing alternative systems to deliver emergency health services during a pandemic or public health emergency is essential to preserving the operation of acute care hospitals and the overall health care infrastructure. Alternate care sites which can serve as areas for primary screening and triage or short-term medical treatment can assist in diverting non-acute patients from hospital emergency departments and manage non-life threatening illnesses in a systematic and efficient manner.

Methods: In New York State, we developed a model concept of operations plan for alternate care sites to be used during pandemics and large-scale public health emergencies. Best-practice methods were used to design operational plans, clinical protocols, altered standards of care, and progressive medical care designed to allow the mild to moderately ill patient to be managed and then return to their homes for convalescence.

Results: Significant interagency planning was conducted to create a model ACS plan. Accomplishments included: Creating stakeholders, engaging community partners, site selection, staffing issues, designing medical protocols and clinical pathways, functional role development, equipment and supplies, site security, communication with the public, drafting the plan, designing training programs and exercising the ACS plan.

Conclusion: Learning how to create stakeholders at local and regional levels and begin a process of collaborative planning and interagency cooperation is essential in preparing for and operating an alternate care site. Lessons learned and best-practices developed in our program will be presented to assist attendees in beginning or continuing the process of planning to operate alternate care sites in their home areas.

Learning Objectives:
Objective: Describe the steps necessary to begin the planning phase of ACS development. Objective: Identify strategies to create stakeholders and engage community and regional partners in the concept and planning process. Objective: List and describe the essential components of an ACS plan and identify existing components of other public health preparedness plans which could be modified or adapted to an ACS planning initiative. Objective: Create an ACS planning timeline which can be utilized to begin ACS planning in your home agency or jurisdiction.

Keywords: Community Health Planning, Emerging Health Issues

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Professor Michael J. Reilly, MPH NREMT-P is the Director of the Graduate Programs in Emergency Preparedness, Assistant Director of the Center for Disaster Medicine, and Assistant Professor of Public Health Practice at New York Medical College. Prof. Reilly earned his Master of Public Health degree from the Yale University School of Medicine, where his concentration was environmental health science and risk assessment. Additionally, he earned his BS cum laude in Health Science, as well as an AS and certificate in Paramedic Technology from Northeastern University in Boston, MA. Professor Reilly has over a decade of multidisciplinary experience in emergency preparedness, public safety, inter-governmental relations, and public health and emergency management. He has been published in the World's leading disaster medicine and public health preparedness journals, and received international awards and recognition for his work on trauma systems and health systems in the context of disaster and public health preparedness. Prof. Reilly is an internationally recognized expert in the areas of emergency medical services, and health system preparedness and response, with direct experience in responding to mass casualty events and public health emergencies. Prof. Reilly is frequently called upon to provide expert consultation, subject matter expertise and evaluate health care systems preparedness, emergency planning, and drills and exercises. In addition to his work at NYMC, Prof. Reilly also holds faculty appointments as an Adjunct Professor at the Metropolitan College of New York, School of Public Affairs & Administration, in the Department of Emergency and Disaster Management, and as an Associate faculty member at the Columbia University, Mailman School of Public Health in the Department of Environmental Health Science. Additionally, he has previously been a member of the faculty at Northeastern University and in the State of Connecticut Community College System. Prof. Reilly remains active as a paramedic in the Metro New York City area and maintains numerous specialty and technical certifications and instructor credentials in the areas of: Emergency medical services, OSHA compliance and worker safety, environmental health, hazardous materials emergency response, emergency management, counterterrorism, and weapons of mass destruction preparedness and response. Prof. Reilly is responsible for the day-to-day operation and management of the Center for Disaster Medicine at New York Medical College. Additionally, he coordinates the research and educational programs for the Center, and provides expert content in the areas of counterterrorism, weapons of mass destruction (WMD) preparedness and response, and general disaster and emergency management. Prof. Reilly has designed numerous educational curricula and training programs for a variety of preparedness functional roles for public health, emergency management and public safety audiences at the professional and graduate levels. He is a Senior Lecturer for multiple Federal Agencies including (DOJ, DHS and OSHA). Additionally, he is an active member of several State and National committees on homeland security and emergency management programs.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.