The Role Of A Nurse Role In Disaster Planning

1572 Words 7 Pages
Nurses are the largest group of healthcare professionals making up to 80% of the health care workforce (Wilson, Whitaker, & Whitford, 2012). Because of their unique position and sheer numbers, they are often on the front lines of disaster response and are well placed to aid in disaster planning. According to Merriam-Webster.com, a disaster is defined as unexpected event (such as a flood, tornado, fire, disease outbreak, plane crash, etc.) that happens abruptly and causes much suffering or loss to many people (2015). It is in this type situation, where the needs of the group being cared for are greater than their resources, when the skills, creativity and critical thinking of nurses are of extreme value. In this paper we will explore the different …show more content…
A nurse should have their own disaster plan and everyone in the family should know it. Emergency supplies (food, water, medical kit, blankets, important documents and other items listed on www.ready.gov/build-a-kit) should be gathered. A meeting place outside the home should be arranged. There must also be plans for care for any children, pets, or dependent elders, in case the nurse need to assist in relief efforts. A clear plan for the care for their family in their absence, is imperative for the nurse to be able to focus fully on their patients. Another way to be prepared is to be involved. There are many disaster preparedness and relief organizations. There are some based in the community such as, Community Emergency Response Teams or CERT and there are some that provide relief worldwide, like American Red Cross. Think carefully about all the possible ramification of volunteering, not only for oneself but also for family. Some questions that must be asked are, will volunteering interfere with one’s regular job and does the nurse have enough resources to provide care for any dependents at home. Another way be involved, is with disaster preparedness legislation. Nurses often have unique insight into the current needs of the community and can provide information about the resources and protections needed aid providing the best possible health care in a disaster. By being involved in disaster preparedness activities, nurses not only ready themselves but also act as a role model for the

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