Bioterrorism and Health System Preparedness: Addressing Surge Capacity in a Mass Casualty Event [open pdf - 161KB]
"A bioterrorist attack or other large-scale public health emergency has the potential to result in great numbers of human casualties. Substantial work has been done throughout the country at local, regional, State, and Federal levels to improve health system preparedness, and many health care organizations and systems have developed surge capacity and other medical care preparedness plans. Planning for a mass casualty event should also address what can be done outside the traditional health care system to cope with a surge in patient flow before, during, and after an event. In 2004, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) expanded its Bioterrorism Preparedness Research portfolio to include several projects that focus on surge capacity issues. Consistent with that focus, AHRQ sponsored three Web conferences on surge capacity and health system preparedness. The first dealt with education and training; the second with facilities and equipment; and the third in the series, held on October 26, 2004, examined some of the ways resources might be deployed in response to a mass casualty event. This issue brief summarizes this third Web conference."
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Issue Brief No. 9
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality: http://www.ahrq.gov/