Most medium-sized or larger U.S. communities are now better prepared than ever before to cope with "routine" incidents such as car crashes and motorcycle accidents. But a much smaller number is able to deal with truly major incidents that stress not only the rescue equipment available but also the skills of the first responders on the scene.
The U.S. government, and most major American cities, have worked diligently, and with considerable success, since the 9/11 terrorist attacks to upgrade their homeland-defense capabilities. But "better" is not the same as "enough" - and probably never will be.
The United States is home to probably the most ethnically diverse population in the world. That is a blessing in many ways - but it poses major difficulties for emergency-management officials and other leaders in times of crisis, when the responsibility of warning the public becomes a polyglot challenge.
The CoN certification signifies that WebEOC is in full compliance with the Army Enterprise Infrastructure's strict standards for security, supportability, sustainability, and compatibility. In addition to the U.S. Army, the certification applies to all National Guard, Army Reserve, and Department of Defense organizations that use the Army Enterprise Infrastructure Network.
President Obama has exercised his authority to declare a national emergency in order to be prepared in the event of a rapid increase in illness across the nation that may overburden healthcare resources.
Rapiscan Systems has received approximately $29 million in orders from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agency to provide multiple units of its advanced cargo- and vehicle-inspection solutions for customs inspections, security screening, and various air and sea ports of entry.
Upp's IRMS H1N1 Vaccine Provider Registration System provides online registration for healthcare providers that includes demographic information, contact details, storage available, etc. This data, coupled with demographics at the state, regional, county, and jurisdictional levels, allows each state to apportion its allocated H1N1 vaccines in accordance with the CDC's (Centers for Disease Control & Prevention) immunization prioritized population groups.
"Emergency preparedness is a matter of priorities," said FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) Federal Coordinating Officer Gracia Szczech. "A family first-aid kit typically costs less than dinner for two at a restaurant. It's worth cooking at home one night to keep your family safe."
The federal government has updated response plans, enhanced community mitigation planning and guidance, and improved a range of abilities. These improvements are not only critical to the H1N1 response, but are also critical to responding to future pandemics when they occur. (Written Testimony by Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano)
"Raytheon has more than 10 years of experience in providing the TSA (Transportation Security Administration) & Federal Aviation Administration with aviation-security expertise and innovative integration solutions that ensure safe and efficient movement of people around our nation's airports," said Charles Keegan, Raytheon Technical Services Company LLC director of Civil Aviation Solutions.
Gary Dunn, VP, Sales and Marketing, Avon Protection, said, "With NIOSH [National Institute for Occupational Safety & Health] industrial certification now in place, we are expecting an enthusiastic response to the FM53 with the Federal, Corrections & Law Enforcement user community. The FM53 is a highly featured mask, incorporating the latest technical advances which Avon has developed for the U.S. Special Forces [and other users]."
"Rich brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to this position, and ... will be an extremely valuable addition to the leadership teams at DHS [the U.S. Department of Homeland Security] and FEMA [the Federal Emergency Management Agency]," said FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate. " ... I look forward to working with him to improve our nation's emergency-management team."
Today's homeland-security and emergency-management professionals are highly skilled and exceptionally well motivated. Their second most important goal, though - after keeping the nation safe - is to ensure that their second- and third-generation successors are even more competent and capable than the first-generation leaders now setting the pace.
It started with extremely low-tech audio communications, and in recent years telemedicine technology has spawned a spectrum of much more advanced systems and devices that are of literally life-or-death importance to many citizens in distress. But the paperwork - specifically including development and performance standards - has not kept up.
A task force of some of the world's leading influenza experts will meet in Washington, D.C., during early December to consider what their nations can learn from current efforts to address the H1N1 virus and how they can better utilize and develop science to prevent and/or better manage future influenza outbreaks.
"I am extremely proud of the men and women of the Harford County Emergency Operations Center who worked hard to achieve the highest accreditation possible," said Harford County Executive David R. Craig. "The Harford County EOC has served the citizens of Harford County with excellence and exemplary service for many, many years. To attain this international recognition makes the accomplishment ... very special for Harford County."
"Preparedness is a shared responsibility and everyone - including businesses, universities, and non-profit organizations - has a role to play," said DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano. "Ensuring [that] our private-sector partners have the information and training they need to respond to disasters will strengthen our efforts to build a culture of preparedness nationwide."
MSDH has partnered with the Mississippi State Department of Education, individual school districts, and several County Emergency Management Agencies in a new program called "AmbuBus" to help provide mass patient evacuations in the event of a public health emergency such as a hurricane.
"Standardizing these agreements allows us to better use the resources and capabilities of our law-enforcement partners, facilitates accountability, and ensures that all participating jurisdictions are following uniform standards throughout the country," said Assistant Secretary for U.S. Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) John Morton.
"These cutting-edge technologies will help us better detect threats at our nation's borders while expediting legitimate travel and trade," said DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano. "The Recovery Act has infused critical resources into local economies across the country while strengthening our nation's security."
The contract calls for Rapiscan Systems to provide an integrated customs-screening solution that leverages the company's broad product range and high-performance transmission X-ray technology, which are capable of detecting shielded threats in densely packed cargo containers or baggage while offering operators unsurpassed image quality for the rapid detection of potential threats.
Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano joined Colorado Governor Bill Ritter to unveil the video "Recognizing Eight Signs of Terrorism" - produced with DHS grant funds & designed to educate citizens about their shared responsibility of recognizing signs of terrorist activity.
The best educational curriculum is one that leads to a sudden realization that even more education is needed - in what should be a continuing upward spiral. Which is exactly what the educational overseers of the federally governed NIMS & ICS policy mandates are hoping for as they develop an open-ended series of "next-level" training courses.
The goal is the same - doing the most good for the most patients. But there are several significant, and perhaps educational, differences between the way that French medical-response units are trained and operate as compared with their American counterparts.
Properly used, chemicals can benefit mankind in many ways. Improperly used - by terrorists, for example - they can be more of a curse than a blessing, and as weapons of mass destruction could be even more dangerous, over a longer period of time, than a nuclear missile.
The focus of this pilot deployment is to test new sensors that can rapidly detect and identify the potential release of a bio-threat agent as part of the DHS S&T (Department of Homeland Security Science & Technology) Detect-to-Protect (D2P) Project.
"The training provided by the Center for Domestic Preparedness is critical to ensuring America's responders are prepared for the challenges they may face," said Timothy Manning, deputy administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency's National Preparedness Directorate.
"These new initiatives will improve accountability and safety in our detention facilities as we continue to engage in smart and effective enforcement of our nation's immigration laws," said Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency will evaluate a biennial emergency preparedness exercise at the Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant. The exercise, scheduled for the week of October 19, will test Maryland's ability to respond to an emergency at the nuclear facility.
The QSA600TC CBRE (Chemical, Biological, Radiological & Explosives) Transport Case Sampling Kit and the QSA800HC CBRE Hard Case Sampling Kit and training versions of these kits are now available on the GSA (General Services Administration) schedule for immediate purchase.
The Joint Biological Agent Identification and Diagnostic System (JBAIDS) has been approved by the military to run tests for the H1N1 virus. The device is deployed across the globe, including Iraq & Afghanistan, by all four branches of the U.S. military. The JBAIDS instrument will be used to test military personnel and their families for Influenza A, Swine flu A, and H1 Swine flu, with results in less than an hour.
Friends helping friends, neighbors helping neighbors - it's Biblical, it's common sense, and it's the right thing to do. But it's also much more complicated in today's world, when mass-casualty incidents can cause so much damage that very few communities can recover without outside help.
The critical infrastructure of the United States is now better protected than it was before the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The same cannot be said for the parking lots next to government buildings, power plants, and other possible targets - most of which can be entered through 22 million "access points" (aka manhole covers).
Berkeley Nucleonics, manufacturer of the Model PB-5 Pulser, which offers 5 ppb (parts per billion) stability over temperature changes, allows end users to test the linearity and stability of the most demanding circuits. The company has also developed a new front-end utility, called PB-5 WinControl, that expands the functionality and test options for the laboratory user.
The CMS5000 Monitoring System is designed for continuous, unattended remote monitoring of water or air. Using GC (gas chromatography) technology, CMS5000 analyzes and quantifies Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) and Toxic Industrial Chemicals (TICs) on-site to obtain accurate results in minutes.
October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month and therefore an opportunity, throughout the month, to learn how to make yourself, your business, and your family safer online. Cybersecurity is like preparing for a natural disaster or for a terrorist attack - i.e., it is a shared responsibility in which every American has a role to play.
The GPS-COM system, which is designed for use with the UltraRadiac hand-held radiation detector, allows first responders to concentrate on the task at hand while transmitting dose-rate data points as well as GPS information for an individual or team carrying the device.
"National Preparedness Month may be coming to an end, but the need for the public to be prepared continues," said FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) Administrator Craig Fugate. "We appreciate all the effort that went into making this month [September] a success, but the fact remains, emergencies can happen anytime and anywhere. The public is an essential member of our emergency management team and their preparedness is critical to our success."
"The increased use of health information technology is a key focus of our reform efforts because it will help to improve the safety and quality of health care generally while also cutting waste out of the system," said HHS (the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.
Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano kicked off National Cybersecurity Awareness Month by announcing the department's new authority to recruit & hire additional cybersecurity professionals over the next three years. The authority was needed to help the department carry out its broad mission of protecting the nation's cyber infrastructure, systems, and networks.
The Secure 1000 Single Pose uses advanced backscatter technology and proprietary image-processing software to rapidly detect potential threats that may be concealed on passengers at aviation checkpoints. Following rigorous testing, the TSA (Transportation Security Administration) selected the Rapiscan Secure 1000 Single Pose to be the first and, to date, only system qualified under the AIT (Advanced Imaging Technology) program.
Mobile Defensive Fighting Positions (MDFP) are commonly used at entry-control points to provide a higher level of protection for security and to overwatch personnel. They are also widely used in combat areas as a ballistic enhancement to temporary sand-filled or construction-material outposts.