March 11-17, 2019

The Northwest Region Healthcare Coalition’s next meeting is Thursday March 14th beginning at 10:30 am. 



We have finalized the schedules for the Basic Disaster Life Support (BDLS), Advanced Disaster Life Support (ADLS), and Certified Hospital Emergency Coordinators (CHEC) courses. The BDLS course is April 3, 2019, the ADLS course is April 4 -5, 2019, and the Basic and Advanced CHEC course is May 22-24, 2019. The training will be held at Harrisonburg Rescue Squad. Please see the flyers for Basic Disaster Life Support Course, Advanced Disaster Life Support Course, and Certified Hospital Emergency Coordinator Course. We have also posted this information to our Events calendar located on our website. The courses are free to all Northwest Region Healthcare Coalition members and partners. Please check back often for this and all of our educational offerings.


Wow a new milestone! Our website has reached over 2,000 viewers. Let’s keep it going by informing anyone who has an interest in the Northwest Region Coalition and the information we provide.

Click here to access our website. Don’t forget to visit the Events calendar as we add several training events without announcing them in the weekly updates.

We have developed a one page understanding of the regional coalition that can be shared between coalition partners. Please click here to view the regional “one-pager”.

 Virginia Hospital & Healthcare Association

Virginia Department of Health

1. Virginia Department of Health Weekly Influenza Activity Report

To view the weekly report, click here. This link will be provided each week until we are no longer in flu season for the 2018-2019 reporting period. To view the map of the US for the influenza summary, click here.

2. 2019 Public Health and Healthcare Preparedness Academy

The 2019 Public Health and Healthcare Preparedness Academy will be held on March 19-21,2019 at the Founders Inn in Virginia Beach. The theme this year for the Academy is Responding to 21st Century Emerging Threats. Please click here for the flyer.

Examples of 21st Century Threats Include:

  • Hurricanes
  • Wildfires
  • Environmental impacts of fracked gas pipelines
  • Civil unrest/terrorism
  • Gun violence
  • Opioid epidemic
  • Emerging biological threats
  • Cybersecurity threats
  • Increasing stress on the social determinants of health (economic insecurity, etc)

The Northwest Region will reimburse attendees who are employed by the partners located within the region. For additional information, please contact Matt Cronin, Exercise and Training Specialist, Northwest Region Healthcare Coalition.

The Founders Inn is sold out of room. However, beginning Wednesday, February 6th, a block of rooms are being held at the Virginia Beach-Norfolk Hotel & Conference Center at the per diem rate of $99 on the nights of March 18,19, 20 and 21, 2019. The hotel is about 5 miles or 10 minutes away. Rooms can be booked by calling (757) 499-4400 (direct) or (800) 567-3856 (toll free) or 800-465-4329 (worldwide number) and asking for “Preparedness Academy.” Reservations must be made on or before February 25, 2019 for this rate. If you are unable to attend, your room reservation must be cancelled 72 hours in advance to avoid being charged. If you are unable to attend and you do not cancel before the 72 hour cutoff, the regional coalition will not pay for your charges. You can also check with Founders Inn (757) 366-5700 to see an anyone has canceled and if a room is available. If so, please use the Group Code VPH. 


Many of the attendees have booked rooms but not yet registered to attend the Academy/ Field Epi Seminar. Please go into TRAIN and register so we can have enough seats, materials, etc.    

  • Public Health and Healthcare Preparedness Academy Course ID:1082071 (March 19-20)
  • VDH: Field Epidemiology Seminar 2019 (In Person) / Course ID: 1079541   (March 21)
  • VDH: Field Epidemiology Seminar 2019 (via Webinar) / Course ID:1079543   (March 21)

The Northwest Region Healthcare Coalition will reimburse regional partners who attend. The reimbursement will include lodging, travel, and per diem. Paid lodging covers March 19th and March 20th. Registration/Check-in begins March 19th at 12:00 pm and the event begins at 1:00 pm. Since the event ends at 5:00 pm March 20th, we are reimbursing lodging for that night. If a meal is provided at the conference, you will not be able to request reimbursement for that meal so, please plan accordingly regarding meals at the event. After returning from the conference, you will receive an email from VHHA regarding the procedure to request reimbursement. The reimbursement process will be online, and you will need to include all supporting documentation. We graciously welcome all regional partners and hope you are able to attend.

 Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response


Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response Technical Resource,                                                                                                                             Assistance Center, and Information Exchange

Hospital Preparedness Program



1. Register Today: Hospital-Based Incident Command Systems: Small and Rural Hospitals Webinar

Hospital-based incident command systems (e.g., HICS) have been used formally in U.S. hospitals since the late 1970’s as a way to manage incidents, coordinate resources and communications, and collaborate with community-based response agencies. Despite their widespread adoption and use, there is very little published information available on lessons learned, best practices, and real-world adaptation of these systems.This free webinar (the second in our series) is scheduled for March 12, 2019, from 1:00-2:30 PM ET and will feature speakers from small and rural hospitals who have experienced a recent emergency and activated their hospital-based incident command systems. The speakers will provide a brief overview of the incident, describe how they implemented their incident command system, share lessons learned and tools for small and rural hospitals, and discuss how they have incorporated these lessons into their current systems and plans. Register today!

2. 2019 Preparedness Summit: Registration Open and Travel Letter Available

The 2019 Preparedness Summit hosted by NACCHO is scheduled for March 26-29, 2019, in St. Louis, Missouri. The theme of this year’s event is “Preparedness Summit 2019: The Evolving Threat Environment”. Early bird registration rates are available on the summit’s website until February 8, 2019.

The annual preparedness summit is a required cooperative agreement activity. The use of HPP and PHEP funds to cover the travel expenses of HPP and PHEP staff attending this meeting is an allowable expense. Please find attached the 2019 Preparedness Summit Recipient Travel Letter.

The annual HPP-PHEP recipient meeting will be held at 9:00 AM ET on Monday, March 25, 2019, the day before the summit opens. The agenda for the daylong meeting is still under development.

Credit: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


Credit: U.S. Food & Drug


Credit: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services


         U.S. Department of Homeland Security 

Federal Emergency Management Agency


Virginia Department of Emergency Management

1. Course Offerings

Please note that these courses are for a wide range of audiences.  First responders, hospital workers, school teachers, house of worship employees, and the general public may benefit from one or many courses.  Please distribute these course announcements throughout your organization and community partners.

1. PER-359: TECC for First Receivers – March 12th from 8 a.m.-1 p.m.

This course is designed to inform First Receivers (hospital personnel including nurses and physicians) about the unique and challenging requirements of administering point of wounding medical care administered by Law Enforcement or Fire/Rescue/EMS personnel to patients during high-threat incidents. First Receivers will learn what they need to know to react to and prepare for an attack, but also how to effectively continue care from the point of wounding to trauma resuscitation.  First Receivers will understand how and why first responders assist wounded, and in what condition casualties will be in when they arrive at the hospital or trauma center.
TECC First Receivers Course Announcement Region 2

2. PER-356: TECC for First Care Providers – March 12th from 2-7 p.m.

Core audience is CERT members, school teachers, public works, office workers, churches, etc that may find themselves at the scene prior to the arrival of public safety. This course is designed to teach participants how to assess the situation during a high-threat incident, such as an Active Shooter or other Active Violence event, in order to make decisions about finding a safe location during the attack, provide life-saving interventions to victims of the attack, and provide information to and follow the directions of local authorities following the incident. By the end of this course, First Care Providers will be empowered to do what they can to help save their own and other’s lives during a high-threat incident until medical and law enforcement responders arrive on the scene.
TECC FCP Course Announcement Region 2

3. PER-357: TECC for Law Enforcement – March 13th from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.

This course is designed to teach law enforcement personnel about the differences between responding to and dealing with an isolated incident versus a high-threat situation with mass casualties. It will also teach and reinforce basic life-saving TECC skills for law enforcement personnel that may be applied in “officer down” self-help/buddy-aid situations, as well as provision of point of wounding care during other high-threat incidents.
TECC LE Course Announcement Region 2  

4. PER-358: TECC for Fire/EMS – March 14th from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.

This course examines and addresses the unique and challenging requirements of administering point of wounding medical care by Fire/Rescue/EMS personnel to patients during a high-threat event. Fire/Rescue/EMS providers will learn to distinguish between life-saving and secondary interventions, and when they should be applied based on the prevailing threat to responders and patients.
TECC Fire-EMS Course Announcement Region 2  

5. PER-360: TECC First Responder Integration for Active Shooter/Active Killing Incidents- Rescue Task Force (RTF) – March 15th from 8 a.m.-1 p.m.

This course presents the various models and options of integrating public safety disciplines for responding to, mitigating, and providing rapid point of wounding care and evacuations during high-threat incidents. Scenario discussions and practice sessions surrounding the real and perceived risks of operating in a high-threat environment, as well as operational strategies to abate them, will also inform participants. This course reflects best-practices of NFPA 3000. 

6. PER-361: TECC Active Shooter/Active Killing Incident Command – March 15th from 1 p.m.-3 p.m.

This course discusses RTF implementation strategies and operational considerations for successful management of high-threat incidents.
RTF Course Announcement Region 2

Registration for the two 5-hour classes (FCP and First Receivers) will be held through EventBrite, and registration for the remaining three classes will be held through the COVLC. COVLC Registration and Enrollment  

7. ICS 300 April 13th & 14th
Spotsylvania County is hosting an ICS 300 course April 13th & 14th at Fire/Rescue Station 4 in Fredericksburg. Registration deadline is April 5th. Please see this flyer for more details.

8. NOAA SKYWARN Basics Course April 3rd at 1900 hours
The Culpeper County Office of Emergency Management is pleased to present the NOAA SKYWARN Basics Course.  The course will be held at the EOC on Wednesday April 3rd at 1900 hours.  A National Weather Service meteorologist will teach the class and provide related materials.  We will be attempting to schedule two classes a year from NOAA , and are Working with Fauquier County Emergency Management to combine efforts and offer the entire series over the next few years.  Starting with SKYWARN the basics and looking to host another in the series in the Fall.

This SKYWARN® Spotter Class is offered free of charge from the combined efforts of your local National Weather Service Forecast Office and Culpeper County Office of Emergency Services.
Registration can be done at
Further information and explanation of all the SKYWARN curriculum can be found at
Training Announcement Skywarn April 3 2019

9. G191 EOC/ICS Interface and G775 EOC Operations and Management
There are multiple offerings for these courses. Please see the flyers for details.
G191 Course Announcement March 2019 Alexandria
G191 Course Announcement April 2019 Manassas Park
G775 Course Announcement Alexandria April 2019
G775 Course Announcement Manassas Park June 2019

10. Individual Assistance Workshop
A two-day workshop will be held at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Manassas May 1st and 2nd. Please see the flyer for details.

2. Statewide Tornado Drill

Virginia’s annual statewide tornado drill will be held on Tuesday, March 19 at 9:45 a.m. 

VDEM will be promoting the drill on social media to encourage participants to register on the website (  The materials also includes information on tornado preparedness guide ( that encourages them to make a plan and be prepared whether they’re at work, home, school or traveling when a tornado strikes.
Tornado One Sheet (In House Printing and Digital Download)

1. Memorandum of Understanding
We are pleased to announce that the Northwest Region Healthcare Coalition has begun receiving requests to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the coalition and non-hospital facilities. The MOU is designed for healthcare facilities that are not classified as an Acute Care or Critical Access hospital, and it is good for five (5) years before it will need to be renewed. If your your organizations resides with the Northwest Region and has not signed the MOU, you can contact either the Regional Coordinator or the Medically Vulnerable Populations Coordinator to find out more details.

We are expanding our outreach to healthcare agencies within the region as a way of offering assistance to you and your organization. We ask for everyone’s help to spread the word by talking with your colleagues about the Northwest Region Healthcare Coalition. You can contact us by clicking the Contact Us tab on our website.
2. Bioterrorism: Using Foods and Beverages as Deadly Weapons

“The food industry should start thinking seriously about various terrorism-related scenarios that could potentially involve radioactive materials and make preparations for dealing with these situations should they become reality,” Robert A. Norton, Ph.D., urges in Food Safety Magazine.
University War Game Exercise Provides Training on How to Cope with Bioterrorism Attack
The University of Washington is one of the creators of a tabletop war game exercise involving a mock bioterrorist attack on food and an infectious disease. According to the UW website, this scenario involves “four fictional countries varying in population size and resources and their respective health departments and local emergency responders.”
In responding to 22 separate incidents as the outbreak unfolds, participants discuss policy issues, such as:

  • Who is responsible?
  • What information is needed?
  • When is public information given out?

The game’s intended audience is “anyone who would be responding to a public health emergency.” According to UW, that includes people such as:

  • Hospital administrators and clinicians
  • Public health administrators
  • Nurses
  • Laboratory directors
  • Environmental health staff
  • School district administrators
  • First responders such as emergency medical services, fire safety, law enforcement and emergency medical technicians

For information and to read the entire article, click here.

Source: William Oliver Hedgepeth of American Military University
3. 4 Virginia Health Systems, Universities awarded $23M for Data Science Institute

NIH awarded the Translational Health Research Institute of Virginia — a partnership between the University of Virginia, Inova Health System, Virginia Tech and Carilion Clinic — $23 million in funding to find ways to apply research to clinical practice.
The institute, or iTHRIV, brings in translational research, clinical research and data science from each of the participating institutions across the state: the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Inova Health System in Falls Church, Virginia Tech in Blacksburg and Carilion Clinic in Roanoke.
“This grant is an indication of the innovative research happening right here in Virginia,” Carilion President and CEO Nancy Howell Agee said in a press release. “It is an investment that will improve lives across the commonwealth, and we are excited to join our partners and peers in discovery.”
The NIH funding is part of a national Clinical and Translational Science Awards program, which provides roughly 60 organizations in the U.S. with funding to solve scientific and operational problems in translational research. The funding will help support training the clinical and translational science workforce, engaging patients and underserved populations in research, and advancing the use of data science to improve health.
Source: Emily Rappleye of Becker’s Health IT & CIO Report
4. Update: 5 More Hospitals Affected by Vendor Data Breach

Five additional health systems were notified that hundreds of thousands of patients may have had their information compromised in the ransomware attack on Health Alliance Plan and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Detroit Free Press reports.
In addition to HAP and BCBS, Grand Blanc, Mich.-based McLaren Healthcare, Three Rivers (Mich.) Health, North Ottawa Community Health System in Grand Haven, Mich., Warren (Pa.) General Hospital and UPMC Kane were affected by the data breach.
Collectively, the total number of patients affected by the breach is estimated to be in the hundreds of thousands, Wolverine Solutions Group President Darryl English told Detroit Free Press.
WSG, the medical billing vendor for the healthcare organizations, experienced a ransomware attack Sept. 23, which left the company locked out of its servers and workstations. The attack may have exposed individuals’ names, addresses, dates of birth, member identification numbers, healthcare provider names, patient identification numbers and claim information.
WSG’s ongoing investigation determined the affected records were encrypted. The company is sending letters to notify individuals who may have been affected by the incident and is also providing them free identity protection and credit monitoring services throughout the next year.
Source: Jackie Drees of Becker’s Health IT & CIO Report
As you can see from the article above, healthcare data breaches are continuing. It is important that healthcare IT staff are involved in the emergency management process and that Continuity of Operations Plans, as applicable, are developed and exercised.
5. Free Continuity of Operations (COOP) Plan Template
When an emergency threatens normal operations and prompts the relocation of personnel, Continuity of Operations (COOP) plans help ensure the continuation of a healthcare organization’s essential functions without interruption.
Key Elements of a Healthcare COOP provides healthcare managers with a comprehensive template for building an effective COOP plan.
Whether meeting new Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) preparedness requirements, or simply renewing efforts to improve readiness, your healthcare organization will benefit from this insightful and helpful resource.
We were sent a free downloadable copy of a COOP by Lorin Bristow. Click here to view the free document.
Source: Lorin Bristow of Bold Planning