This blog post is based on a recent webinar with James Paturas, Director of Yale New Haven Health System Center for Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Response (YNHHS-CEPDR).
Ensure Compliance Through Coalition Participation
Even though your organization is awaiting a CMS site visit to evaluate your Emergency Preparedness Program, you can continue to strengthen parts of your program while you wait. Healthcare coalitions are already requirements of both the Hospital Preparedness Program (HPP) and the Public Health Emergency Preparedness Program (PHEP), and now they also help fulfill the requirements of the CMS Emergency Preparedness Rule.
Joining a healthcare coalition helps your organization meet CMS requirements while also providing other benefits. In the midst of a crisis, having established relationships and roles within your community can greatly impact how well the emergency is handled.
Paturas emphasizes the importance of working with a coalition, sharing “The federal government has a sense that organizations have been planning in a vacuum, and they know that this is not going to work. Partnering with others ensures that all of the healthcare organizations have a voice and are represented in the plans. It allows everyone to come to the table.”
What Constitutes a Coalition?
The federal government has put together a core list of entities that make up a healthcare coalition. It must include two hospitals, local public health, emergency medical services/EMS and emergency management. It may also include Long-Term Care, Home Health, Durable Medical Equipment, and other local organizations.
Benefits of Coalitions
When meeting as a coalition, Paturas advises, “First, understand your organization’s capabilities and capacities. Then understand each of your partner organizations’ capabilities and capacities, and recognize that not everyone can do the same things. This is okay as long as cumulatively, they all support a response and recovery effort.”
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