Members of Lakewood Health System’s staff recently participated in the 2015 Central Healthcare Coalition Functional Exercise, which was coordinated through the Central Minnesota Healthcare Preparedness Coalition (CMHPC). Two exercises, which simulated a local train derailment, were held on April 28th, and June 5th.
Participating staff included Tarin Anding, Melanie Bestland, Lisa Bjerga, Scott Braith, Rachel Delaney, Cindy Denning, Kathy Dobson, Jim Dregney, Stacy Line, Becky Misegades, Corrine Neisess, Jerry Nelson, Allan Schmidt, Karen Tetlie, Connie Wells and Craig Wolhowe. Each staff member had a specific role in the Incident Command System, and was responsible for simulating and practicing Lakewood’s response in a real emergency situation. Emergency Preparedness Coordinator Rod Opheim and Patient Access Director Jill Perius attended a two-day training session through the CMHPC prior to the exercises, and acted as facilitators and controllers for each exercise.
“Exercises like this are important to Lakewood Health System and staff because they give us an opportunity to place staff in a realistically stressful situation in which they make decisions within the Hospital Incident Command System,” said Opheim. “In both exercises, staff created an atmosphere of teamwork and communication to accomplish the objectives that were defined in the planning process, which enhanced confidence in their abilities, should an actual incident take place.”
An after-action meeting will be held to discuss future planning and areas for improvement.