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Effective emergency management and response require appropriate utilization of various resources as an incident evolves. This manuscript describes the information resources used in chemical emergency management and operations and how their utility evolves from the initial response phase to recovery to event close out. The authors address chemical hazard guidance in the context of four different phases of emergency response: preparedness, emergency response (both initial and ongoing), recovery, and mitigation. Immediately following a chemical incident, during the initial response, responders often use readily available, broad-spectrum guidance to make rapid decisions in the face of uncertainties regarding potential exposure to physical and health hazards. Physical hazards are described as the hazards caused by chemicals that can cause harm with or without direct contact. Examples of physical hazards include explosives, flammables, and gases under pressure. This first line of resources may not be chemical-specific in nature, but it can provide guidance related to isolation distances, protective actions, and the most important physical and health threats. During the ongoing response phase, an array of resources can provide detailed information on physical and health hazards related to specific chemicals of concern. Consequently, risk management and mitigation actions evolve as well. When the incident stabilizes to a recovery phase, the types of information resources that facilitate safe and effective incident management evolve. Health and physical concerns transition from acute toxicity and immediate hazards to both immediate and latent health effects. Finally, the information inputs utilized during the preparedness phase include response evaluations of past events, emergency preparedness planning, and chemical-specific guidance about chemicals present. This manuscript details a framework for identifying the effective use of information resources at each phase and provides case study examples from chemical hazard emergencies.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Journal of emergency management (Weston, Mass.)
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A way of providing emergency medical care that is guided by a thoughtful integration of the best available scientific knowledge with clinical expertise in EMERGENCY MEDICINE. This approach allows the practitioner to critically assess research data, clinical guidelines, and other information resources in order to correctly identify the clinical problem, apply the most high-quality intervention, and re-evaluate the outcome for future improvement.
Management of the acquisition, organization, storage, retrieval, and dissemination of information. (From Thesaurus of ERIC Descriptors, 1994)
A concept, developed in 1983 under the aegis of and supported by the National Library of Medicine under the name of Integrated Academic Information Management Systems, to provide professionals in academic health sciences centers and health sciences institutions with convenient access to an integrated and comprehensive network of knowledge. It addresses a wide cross-section of users from administrators and faculty to students and clinicians and has applications to planning, clinical and managerial decision-making, teaching, and research. It provides access to various types of clinical, management, educational, etc., databases, as well as to research and bibliographic databases. In August 1992 the name was changed from Integrated Academic Information Management Systems to Integrated Advanced Information Management Systems to reflect use beyond the academic milieu.
The use of communication systems, such as telecommunication, to transmit emergency information to appropriate providers of health services.
Preservation and or management of WATER RESOURCES especially under conditions of scarce supply.
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