Katrina’s aftermath: How our disaster plan was tested

Source: Jeannie Thompson, RN, Vol. 60 no. 8, August 2007

Now two years and counting, we look back at lessons learned when Hurricane Katrina landed more than 300 miles away, and it became our responsibility to provide care to thousands of New Orleans’ ill and injured.

Hurricanes Katrina and Rita revealed the flaws in hospital disaster-preparedness plans. Solutions include regular drills, plans to set up “surge hospitals” for mass casualties, staffing contingency plans to counter caregiver shortages, and standardized disaster-skill training.

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