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Hospital-based special needs patient decontamination: lessons from the shower.
OBJECTIVESA hospital-based decontamination team tested whether it could (1) perform effective technical decontamination while maintaining safety of staff and patients; (2) safely accommodate unique needs in the showers, including guide dogs and motorized wheelchairs; (3) identify needs of special needs populations by patient type, including blindness, hearing loss, and cognitive learning disabilities; (4) outline effective use of federal preparedness funds to support planning and execution of tabletop and mock victim drills; and (5) demonstrate the ability of a community hospital to act as a catalyst for community-wide disaster response improvements.
DESIGNA series of five disaster exercises were used to test hypotheses and to generate quality improvement results.
SETTINGFixed emergency department decontamination facilities.
PATIENTS/PARTICIPANTSA total of 39 hospital-based decontamination team members, 40 other drill staff and 35 mock victims were included.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURESThree priority decontamination operations changes resulted from each of the five completed drills.
RESULTSFormulated prioritized list of decontamination team procedural changes to improve patient safety and technical decontamination and to generate a table of best practices to share.
CONCLUSIONSWith enhanced training, disaster drills participation of community response agencies and special needs patients, community hospitals can improve safety while accommodating unique patient needs.
American journal of disaster medicine 5:6 pg 353-60
Emergency Service, Hospital
Pub Type(s)Journal Article