Emergency Radiological Response for Hospitals in Light of the Realities of Multiple Casualty Events
J.C. Keklak; L.J. Martino; and A.R. Patel (Thomas Jefferson University Hospital)
The realities of any large-scale, multiple casualty events that occur are likely to place overwhelming demands on a hospital's emergency response capabilities. Radiation Safety or other personnel responsible for hospital preparation for dealing with radioactively contaminated victims must take into account the added challenges that multiple casualty events are likely to present. These challenges include the sheer numbers of casualties; non-radiation hazards that may be present; the potential for very short times between the occurrence of the event and the arrival of victims; and communications between and among various hospital personnel groups as the event unfolds. Radiological emergency response to such events needs to be one component of a well-integrated hospital emergency response plan. Large-scale, multi-casualty, multi-hospital drills provide important lessons for meeting the challenges of multiple casualty events.