HHS releases no-notice incident tip sheets
LHA Impact Weekly - Aug. 13, 2018

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response’s (ASPR) Technical Resources, Assistance Center, and Information Exchange (TRACIE) has developed a new series of no-notice incident tip sheets for hospitals and other healthcare facilities planning for no-notice incident response. These resources include best practices for communities to respond better to critical incidents, and they also highlight guidance on information sharing that can help emergency health planners. The Communications Systems Topic Collection and Emergency Public Information and Warning/Risk Communications include lessons learned and tools that can be tailored to meet the specific threats and needs of healthcare and medical professionals. Additional resources can be found on the ASPR TRACIE website.

HHS posts recorded healthcare radiological events webinar
LHA Impact Weekly - Aug. 13, 2018
HHS’s ASPR TRACIE recently posted “The Healthcare Challenges After Radiological Events” recorded webinar and slides on care and exposure of radiation-injured patients. The webinar covers assessing, triaging, treating and following up with patients after radiological and nuclear emergencies. Additional resources can be found on the CDC website.

CDC issues HAN alert on rising number of Fentanyl deaths

LHA Impact Weekly - Aug. 06, 2018
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a recent HAN update alert in the evolving opioid overdose epidemic. This ongoing epidemic involves illicitly-manufactured fentanyl and an array of potent fentanyl analogs. This trend continues in Louisiana and is affecting thousands of Louisiana families. Following up on the original advisory released in 2016 (HAN 395), the update was sent to public health departments, healthcare professionals, first responders, medical examiners and coroners. For more information and updated recommendations, contact the Louisiana Department of Health at 225-342-2540.
DHS publishes nerve-agent contingency guidance 
LHA Impact Weekly - July 30, 2018

The Chemical Defense Program within the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published the "Contingency Medical Countermeasures for Treating Nerve Agent Poisoning" guidelines. These guidelines provide the medical and first-responder community with information about contingency pharmaceutical options when conventional therapies are exhausted, or when preferred formulations or routes of administration are not available for all who require therapy. This resource is intended to provide a "contingency" pathway for medical countermeasures use in the setting of a mass-casualty event resulting from the use of nerve agents. It describes the use of ophthalmic atropine drops in place of intravenous and intramuscular use of atropine, as well as the use of other ophthalmic preparations, for both adult and pediatric patients. Nerve-agent attacks can overwhelm available resources including pharmaceutical antidote stocks. Hospitals are encouraged to share the new algorithms and the accompanying explanatory document with relevant healthcare coalition stakeholders, especially hospital emergency departments, EMS response agencies, hazmat response entities and poison control centers.

ASPR TRACIE issues DME disaster resources
LHA Impact Weekly - July 16, 2018

Recently, ASPR's Technical Resources, Assistance Center, and Information Exchange (ASPR TRACIE) published a Durable Medical Equipment (DME) fact sheet with information on general DME categories. The electricity-dependent DME may be affected by disasters and emergencies, including power failures, and CMS provides information on coverage exceptions during a declared disaster and information on DME replacement in a disaster. It also includes information to assist healthcare system preparedness stakeholders to plan for medically-vulnerable populations who rely on DME to live independently within their communities. CMS's online DME Center provides useful resources applicable to emergency preparedness planning.