Alberta Health Services

Depending on the event, Alberta Health Services may activate part or all of one or more of its emergency plans.

  • Hospitals maintain mass casualty response plans to manage a large and sudden influx of casualties. Early notification by the first response agencies of a mass casualty incident is critical to allow the hospital to implement its plan and mobilize resources before receiving casualties.

  • Examples of when a public health plan may be activated are as follows: to support the hospital response to a mass casualty incident; to protect the health of the community when a disaster threatens or is affecting services such as water supply and sanitation; when there is widespread flooding within the community; when the municipality receives persons evacuated from another community because of a disaster or major emergency; as a result of a hazardous materials or dangerous goods incident; or the occurrence of epidemics (influenza, meningitis and pandemic).

  • Health facilities maintain an external evacuation plan in the event that a disaster (fire, building collapse, bomb threat, etc) forces the evacuation of patients, residents and staff. Municipal assistance may be required with the transportation and relocation to temporary accommodation.

  • Public health and community mental health services, along with social services organizations, may establish an outreach program to assist victims recovering from the psycho-social impact of a disaster.

  • A casualty information centre (sometimes called a relative centre) may be established to provide a place where families and friends can obtain information on the location and condition of the casualties. The hospital or health services generally manage the centre. The overwhelming number of casualties may mean that information on casualties is not immediately available. Patient confidentiality may limit what information can be provided.

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