Aligning Exercises in Your Community: Resources Page

This webpage contains resources to support Healthcare Coalition leaders in their efforts to align exercises with other organizations in their community. Types of content include: reports, toolkits, online courses, websites, and news articles. Please refer to our Research Translational Products Page for more information on this and other topics. The listing of these selected resources does not constitute endorsement by the NCDMPH.

General Resources for Exercising and Training


  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In a Moment's Notice: Surge Capacity in Terrorist Bombing Event. 2007 PDF 

    This report summarizes the recommendations of an expert panel convened by CDC in order to develop strategies for the rapid management of a large number of casualties after a terrorist bombing event. These recommendations cover both system-wide and job-specific challenges and solutions. Job roles discussed include: Emergency Medical Services, emergency department staff, surgical and intensive care unit staff, radiology staff, blood bank staff, hospitalists, and hospital administration.

  2. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Lessons Learned: Boston Marathon Bombings: The Positive Effect of Planning and Preparation on Response PDF 

    This document provides an analysis of the multi-agency coordination effort that occurred after the Boston Marathon bombings. Part of this analysis discusses how preparedness measures, including planning and exercises, contributed to Boston's level of preparedness on the day of the marathon. Transferrable lessons are provided at the end of the document.

  3. The Joint Commission. Standing Together: an Emergency Planning Guide for America's Communities. 2005 PDF 

    This planning guide is organized as a tool or template for emergency management planning at the community level. It covers multiple components of effective community-based emergency management, including but not limited to: defining the community, determining the risks and hazards of the community, determining current capacities and capabilities, developing an integrated plan, communication planning, funding sources, planning for mental health and vulnerable populations, and collaborative training, exercising, and drilling.

  4. The Joint Commission. Health Care at the Crossroads: Strategies for Creating and Sustaining Community-wide Emergency Preparedness Systems. 2003 PDF 

    'This report discusses "the issues that must be addressed in developing community-wide preparedness” as well as "federal and state responsibilities for eliminating barriers, and for facilitating and sustaining - through leadership, funding, and other resource deployment - community-based emergency preparedness across the United States."

Toolkits, Guides, and Online Training

  1. University of South Florida Center for Leadership in Public Health Practice. Collaborative Partnerships and Your Community-Based Disaster Coalition - Identifying, Engaging, Motivating, and Sustaining. 2013. PDF 

    "This training will help program participants to develop the essential knowledge, skills, and abilities to organize a Community Disaster Preparedness Coalition or strengthen an existing Coalition that integrates public health, human services, and emergency management systems into their county's disaster preparedness, response, and recovery structure."

  2. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). Hospital Preparedness Exercises Atlas of Resources and Tools. 2010. PDF 

    This document is a compendium of resources and tools intended to help hospital emergency planners "plan for, design and develop, conduct, evaluate, and improve hospital preparedness exercises." The document provides a summary table of the resources, indexes of the resources by author and category, and a section that provides detailed descriptions of each resource or tool.

  3. Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. Mass Fatality Incident Management: Guidance for Hospitals and Other Healthcare Entities. 2008. PDF 

    This guidance document "provides detailed tools and recommendations that may assist hospitals and the offices of Medical Examiners and Coroners during an emergency. The guidance provides checklists for planning, staffing a fatalities management unit, and morgue surge. Tools include job action sheets; an equipment and supplies checklist; a decedent information and tracking card; flow charts for death management, including a flow chart specifically tailored to a death due to pandemic influenza; fact sheets on health risks from working with decedents; storage of human remains; and sample pre- and post-test questions for a mass fatality pandemic influenza exercise."

  4. State of California Emergency Medical Services Authority. 2006 Statewide Medical and Health Disaster Exercise: Exercise Guidebook and Toolkit. 2006. PDF 

    This is the guidebook and toolkit provided for California's 2006 Statewide Medical and Health Disaster Exercise; the scenario for this exercise is a large-scale earthquake hitting a major metropolitan area (San Francisco Bay Area). It provides the resources that would be needed to plan the exercise, intent to participate and exercise evaluation forms, and reference materials.

  5. Kerins D, Barishansky RM, Cortacans HP. How to Conduct EMS Exercises and Drills. 2012. PDF 

    This article provides a broad overview of exercise planning. It is specifically geared towards Emergency Medical Services agencies, however much of the content is generally applicable. This overview includes defining the goals for the exercise, picking the right type of exercise for what needs to be tested, determining objectives, developing a scenario and accompanying materials, and what to do during the actual exercise.

  6. County of Los Angeles. Disaster Preparedness Exercise/Drills (Hospital/Paramedic/EMT-1). 2014. PDF 

    This policy document is an example of guidelines for including Emergency Medical Services (EMS) in exercises. It provides "guidelines for conducting system wide disaster preparedness drills for [EMS] participants in Los Angeles County. This policy defines the roles of EMS provider agencies, health care facilities and the EMS Agency during disaster preparedness exercises and drills."

  7. The Infrastructure Security Partnership. Regional Disaster Resilience Guide for Developing an Action Plan. 2011. PDF 

    This guide provides "a step-by-step process that can be customized to develop a cross-sector, multi-jurisdiction strategy to improve capabilities to deal with any major incident or disaster." It provides general recommendations for organizations as well as recommended actions for the short-term, medium-term, and long-term. Especially note the section on engaging the media.

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