Because natural and manmade disasters can occur at any time, individuals, communities, and governments must be prepared. RAND has developed guidelines for individual preparedness in response to terrorist attacks; evaluated, modeled, and enhanced preparedness policy options for government officials at all levels; and recommended actions that communities should take to prepare for bioterrorist attacks, pandemic flu outbreaks, and other large-scale emergencies.
It is likely that communities with low rates of non-urgent ED use not only have better access to primary care, but patients who are educated about appropriate care seeking and convenient alternatives for acute care, writes Lori Uscher-Pines.
Three mass-casualty events occurring in three very different settings show that disaster preparedness should not be limited to large cities or “target” areas in the United States. One trait that is common to all such events is the need for coordinated, responsive trauma care for victims.
An aircraft's capacity and speed largely determine the rate at which water or retardant can be applied to a fire. Very large air tankers (VLATs) certainly have the capacity to apply large amounts of fluids to a fire, but because of the distances travelled they may not be able to get a second load very quickly.
Boston's health care providers reacted the way they did because they knew what they were supposed to do. Those who did not were smart enough to follow the lead of those who did. That's how a “ritualized” disaster plan works.
Basing public safety decisions on risk analysis allows authorities to devote public resources to those counterterrorism measures that have the potential to do the most good, writes Henry Willis.
In recent years, especially following the economic downturn, states, counties, and cities have looked for ways to reduce costs and maintain basic policing services, leading many to question what the investment in counterterrorism and homeland security has achieved for their jurisdiction.
Although official after-action reports are still being compiled, it looks like Boston's first responders and hospitals delivered under difficult circumstances, writes Arthur Kellermann.
The path to climate change preparedness should start at the intersection of resilience and robustness — that is, building resilient communities with the individuals and organizations within those communities making robust decisions, ones designed to work well over a wide range of ever-changing conditions.
In this fiscally uncertain climate, we should continue to leverage the dual-use benefit of bioterrorism investments by building and maintaining those routine (but essential) public health capabilities that can also be used in response to a variety of public health emergencies.
Art Kellermann reviews what is known from broad outlines of the Newtown attack and past research on gun violence to offer some preliminary thoughts to the Obama Administration's task force and the public.
Given the broad range of threats facing the United States, including those related to extreme weather, it is imperative that monies invested in enhancing health security be well spent, writes Shoshana Shelton.
Recent global disasters vividly illustrate that recovery entails more than simply restoring physical infrastructure such as roads and buildings; it is also a long process of restoring the social infrastructure—the daily routines and networks that support the physical and mental health and well-being of the population, write Anita Chandra and Joie Acosta.
The problem is that on any given day, disaster preparedness takes a back seat to ongoing operations. The tyranny of the urgent prevents hospital administrators from making investments in preparedness, writes Art Kellermann.
While it is quite clear that attacking an event as internationally iconic as the Olympics would be attractive to modern terrorist groups with global aspirations, their ability to do so successfully and shift focus and attention from the competition and achievements of the Games to the terrorist groups' agendas is far less certain, writes Brian Jackson.
The $15 co-pay a mother is expected to cover represents half of a full week's food costs under the U.S. Department of Agriculture's "thrifty" food plan for her 6-year-old, write Art Kellermann and Robin Weinick.
The fact that many ED (emergency department) visits could be managed in primary care settings does not mean that such care is available, write Arthur L. Kellermann and Robin M. Weinick.
Fortunately for the nation's capitol, Hurricane Irene and the East Coast earthquake proved to be relatively minor events, as far as disasters go. But before everyone breathes a sigh of relief, it would be wise to reflect on how people responded to what were essentially dress rehearsals for much bigger events, write Lynn E. Davis and Arthur L. Kellermann.
If the U.S. does not improve its ability to track federal spending and develop reliable measures of effectiveness, precious federal disaster aid will continue to be at risk of being squandered, writes Agnes Gereben Schaefer.
In his campaign, President-elect Barack Obama pledged to rebuild the Gulf Coast — one of the country's most wounded, yet economically strategic, regions.
To keep this laudable promise, he will need to make a sustained commitment not only to a national disaster recovery plan, but also a comprehensive economic development strategy for the Gulf Coast, writes Melissa Flournoy.
Katrina Proved We Must Do Better Job of Protecting Our Protectors, in the Clarion-Ledger