Emergency Decontamination Drill Planned

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Payson Regional Medical Center, in partnership with Payson Police and Fire Departments will be conducting an "Emergency Decontamina-tion Drill" between 10 a.m. and noon, Wednesday June 25.

During the past several weeks PRMC staff and volunteers have been learning the National Incident Management System (NIMS) decontamination procedures, including setting up for decontamination, scene safety, how to don and doff air supplied respirators and protective gear, and personnel safety.

Leadership teams have been learning and role playing within the incident command structure and logistically planning the event in partnership with representatives from Payson police and fire and the office of Gila County Emergency Preparedness.

The purpose of the training exercise is to:

  • Evaluate gross decontamination in the field (fire) and pre-treatment decontamination (hospital).
  • Evaluate effective interagency communication between the hospital, police and fire departments; and test alternative communication measures through Tonto Amateur Radio Association (TARA).

With the aid of Payson police, volunteers will test the hospital's ability to lockdown and secure PRMC's facility, and control traffic, while maintaining access for emergency services and other urgent matters.

Mogollon Health Alliance Auxiliary and Senior Circle volunteers will also assist with the event.

The event will start with a scene in the community where an explosion has occurred near Payson High School.

Some victims will be grossly decontaminated in the field by fire personnel and transported to the hospital.

Others will arrive by personal automobile. All will pass through the hospital's decontamination tent prior to entering the emergency room for evaluation and treatment. Gila County Office of Emergency Preparedness will critique the event.

Supplies and training for this event have, in part, been sponsored by federal grant money as part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services efforts to better prepare communities and specifically hospital readiness to respond in man-made or naturally occurring disasters.

Patients who have scheduled appointments at, or near, the hospital campus Wednesday morning should allow for a few extra minutes.

Police volunteers may be asking patients/visitors their reason for being at PRMC so that they may be able to direct individuals to the proper entrance.

Access to the emergency room will be maintained through out the drill.

For questions or more information, contact PRMC Public Information Officer Cory Houghton (928) 472-1275.

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