I know all of the Scorpions fans clicked this to see a music video. We hate to break your heart, but we are really here to talk about managing chaos in a disaster and why process is very important to true preparation.
Fragmentation of process can pose a real problem in all industries, but in healthcare the lack of solidified process and collaboration can lead to poor patient outcomes. In 2017, we served with the Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) on a multidisciplinary taskforce in the Hurricane Irma response. During our time at the Columbus Civic Center shelter we took on leadership roles, helping to establish additional structure around communication, logistics, and clinic operations.
We could lie and tell you that we knew that our real-time leadership decisions were going to be successful…. but in truth, we got lucky. Upon our return, COR was invited to participate in a debrief about the experience and then the real work began.
“If you can’t describe what you are doing as a process, you don’t know what you are doing.”
-W. Edwards Deming (you know the PDCA guy)
Since Hurricane Irma, we have partnered with GNR (not Guns N’ Roses…. but Gwinnett, Newton, Rockdale) and now the State of Georgia to help achieve their vision of Mass Sheltering. Simply put, we defined, described, and deployed these newly formed processes to the people that are going to carry them out by:
• Engagement with Community Partners
• Modification of Internal Processes
• Empowerment of Staff
As our state enters into the 2019 hurricane season, we are at the Preparedness Summit in St. Louis to share our journey through describing the mass sheltering processes so we can really relay what we are doing. The journey will continue after this summit as we continue collaboration with the Department of Public Health in the development of an all-inclusive training package that will set Georgia apart with just-in-time, on-boarding, and competency training tools that can help us Rock You like a Hurricane!