AHRQ has a new tool
to help public health officials quickly reopen closed and shuttered
hospitals for use in surge capacity situations. This tool was developed
as part of Homeland Security efforts as a response to bioterrorism or
natural disaster.

The new report includes separate, fill-in-the-blank
checklists for chief administrators, facilities experts, medical personnel,
security experts, equipment and supply experts, and medical gas system verifiers
to use in evaluating a facility. It also contains action checklists that help
emergency planners assess and fulfill staffing needs, additional expertise
required, and management needs.

The report also contains a tool kit with
a list of supplies and equipment needed for operation of a reopened facility.
These supplies include such items as nutritional and feeding supplies, gloves
and masks, bandages and dressings, and microbiology needs and syringes. The
report also includes a preliminary, basic pharmacy list that details medications
that would be needed for typical medically stable medical/surgery patients. The
report was prepared under contract to AHRQ by Abt Associates, Inc. AHRQ is
working with the American Hospital Association and other groups to disseminate
this important new resource.

Pretty cool.