Veterinary Economics - June 2012 - (Page 37)
with the tornado just barely missing them. “if the tornado’s path had gone just a bit different, they would be dead,” Dr. leavens says. How can we as veterinarians get involved in disaster preparedness and response for the benefit of our communities and our patients? The first rule of emergency response is: Do not self-deploy. People who show up at a disaster site independent of a formal organization risk becoming casualties themselves. One of the lessons of 9/11 was that a cohesive, nationwide emergency response plan was needed. The national incident Management System (niMS) specifies that everyone on scene needs to fit into an established order of command and that all the organizations need to use plain English to communicate, rather than agency-specific codes or jargon. you can take niMS independent study courses for free online on the Federal Emergency Management agency (FEMa) website. (Find links to all the websites mentioned in this article at dvm360.com/disasterprep.) There are both private-sector and public-section options for veterinarians who want to get involved in disaster preparedness and emergency response. Some of those include:
medical reserve corps (mrc)
WEATHERING THE STORM
Help client help their pets
Along with preparing your own family and veterinary practice team to weather disaster, you can also advise your clients about the best way to include their animals in their disaster planning. Offer pet owners this checklist:
✓ take your pets with you
any time you need to evacuate. even a “shortterm” evacuation like a gas leak could turn into a large-scale disaster that keeps you from your home for days.
✓ Plan in advance exactly
how you’ll evacuate your family and animals (this is especially a concern when owning large or multiple animals).
✓ make sure all animals have identiﬁcation: collar and tags, microchip, halter tags on horses, ear tags on cattle, or permanent marker on hooves or scales.
✓ Prepare a ﬁrst aid kit, including any prescription medications. ✓ assemble a 72-hour emergency kit for you, your family, and your
animals, including food and water (one gallon per person or pet per day for three days).
✓ Gather important papers: a description of the animal (name, species, breed, color, sex, age, distinguishing features); vaccine records; microchip, registration, and licensing papers; current photos (including a picture of you with the animal to establish ownership); and a list of boarding facilities, equestrian centers, stables, and pet-friendly hotels within a 50-mile radius.
The mission of the Medical reserve Corps is “to engage volunteers to strengthen public health, emergency response, and community resiliency.” local MrC units include volunteer physicians, nurses, dentists, veterinarians, and pharmacists who are all precredentialed to respond in emergency situations to protect public health. Since the MrC is primarily concerned with human health needs in a disaster situation, veterinarians with MrC units would mainly be dealing with humans and
✓ small animal “go kit”: bedding, bowls, grooming tools, toys, litterbox, kitty litter, trash bags, paper towels, leashes, collars, crates, carriers, can opener, muzzle, ﬂea and tick preventatives, etc.
✓ Large animal “go kit”: halters, lead ropes, pans, buckets, grooming
and hoof care products and tools, blankets, tack and accessories, ﬂy spray, twitch, leg wraps, etc. Download the AVMA brochure titled “Saving the Whole Family.” Find a link to that brochure and other resources at dvm360.com/ disasterprep.
dvm360.com ❘ June 2012 ❘ Veterinary economics
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Veterinary Economics - June 2012
Veterinary Economics - June 2012
Get in Touch
Practice Management Q&A
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Boost Your EQ
Assess your EQ climate
Extinguish negative reviews
When disaster strikes … where will you be?
Checklist: Help clients help their pets
Lessons from the front lines: When disaster hits home
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Veterinary Economics - June 2012