Regional Events: Trauma Service Area E
Regionwide Patient Surge
Due to a particularly bad flu season, many regional Emergency Departments are being flooded with patients that exceed their capacity. As facilities use EMResource to report their capacity issues, NCTTRAC would like to remind everyone about the difference between the “Advisory” status and the “Closed” status. The following is pulled directly from the current Regional Trauma System Plan, p.22-23:
“Facilities may choose from status values of “Open”, “Closed”, or “Advisory”. “Advisory” is used when there is a situation at the facility that affects operations but doesn’t require closure; the specifics are indicated in the other columns as appropriate or in the “Comments” area. ED personnel are required to monitor and update their ED status at least once each day … A facility may post a “Closed” status only if they are suffering from a facility emergency. Examples may include an internal disaster such as a fire, flooding, power outage, water shortage, or structural damage.”
Advisory vs. Closed
- “Advisory” status should be used if you are informing EMS about interruptions to internal services that may impact patient care, including bed availability issues that affect wait times. Proper selection of the “Advisory” status and the addition of specific comments is critical to the efficient operation of the regional emergency healthcare system.
- “Closed” status is to reflect an internal disaster within a facility that shuts down an emergency department to new patients whether EMS or self-presented. “Closed” should not be used to show that a facility has limited bed availability resulting in long wait times for EMS.
The NCTTRAC Emergency Medical Coordination Center (EMCC) supports regional Healthcare Coalition Partners with coordination and implementation of TSA-E’s plans and solutions for regional disaster preparedness and response. Specific EMCC functions include: Activations & Coordination Center Operations, Communications (routine and emergent), Corrective Action Planning, Crisis Applications Administration, Emergency Medical Task Force 2, EOP Implementation, Surveys & Data Analysis and Training & Exercise.
A regional crisis application capability enables interaction between Healthcare Coalition members, jurisdictional emergency management officials, public health, and the state. The development of robust crisis applications enhances regional communication, centralized data collection, emergency status tools, and notification capability.
The NCTTRAC EMCC provides support for all communications functions within the healthcare coalition in TSA-E. The EMCC conducts monthly communications drills, provides hardware and software support, and promotes the implementation of appropriate system maintenance and upgrades for communication tools across the region.