July 12 – 18, 2021

Regional Coalition Meeting
The Northwest Region Healthcare Coalition will hold its monthly meeting Thursday August 12 beginning at 10:30 am. The agenda, the July meeting minutes, and the conference dial-in information will be sent to the routine attendees on the Tuesday prior to the meeting. The meeting will be held via our Ring Central conference call line.

Credit: Virginia Hospital & Healthcare Association

Credit: Virginia Department of Health

COVID-19 Pandemic

Information related to the pandemic can be found on our website under Current Events. We will continue to update information related to COVID-19 there.


Credit: Health & Human Services

Credit: Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response


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

         Credit: Hospital Preparedness Program



1. Health Care Readiness 2020 Annual Report
The Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response released their annual report on healthcare preparedness. 2020 was a very challenging year for everyone, but as the report indicates, the healthcare organizations and the healthcare coalitions either increased or slightly lowered their preparedness efforts based on their goals and the performance measures. Although two of the four scoring areas on page 5 slightly decreased, the significant increases in the other two areas overshadows the decreases.

The report includes the response to COVID-19 and highlights lessons learned and increasing capabilities of coalitions and healthcare organizations across the country. One significant area that needs to be improved is the participation from Emergency Medical Services. The participation by these agencies/organizations is 42%, while 82% emergency management agencies, 90% public health, and 92% of the acute care hospitals participate in the healthcare coalitions.
Read More »

2. HHS extends deadline, modifies designation of scarce materials subject to COVID-19 hoarding prevention measures

The Department of Health and Humans Services extended the designation issued Feb. 1 under Executive Order 13910 and section 102 of the Defense Production Act, as amended, for health and medical resources necessary to respond to the spread COVID-19 that are scarce or the supply of which would be threatened by excessive accumulation by people or entities not needing the excess supplies. 

HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra removed 17 items from the list, including N-95 Filtering Facepiece Respirators, portable ventilators and other specified personal protective equipment, supplies and equipment. HHS kept four items on the list, including medical gowns or apparel, certain laboratory reagents and materials, certain drug products, and syringes and hypodermic needles. These designated materials are subject to the hoarding prevention measures authorized under the executive order and the DPA. The action took effect July 1 and terminates Nov. 15, 2021.
Read More »

  Credit: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


Credit: U.S. Food & Drug Administration

1. Join Us: Webinar on Revocation of EUAs for Non-NIOSH Approved Respirators and Decontamination Systems

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will host a webinar to share information and answer questions about revocation of EUAs for non-NIOSH-approved respirators and decontamination systems. Specifically, the FDA will present information about the June 30, 2021, Update: FDA No Longer Authorizes Use of Non-NIOSH-Approved or Decontaminated Disposable Respirators – Letter to Health Care Personnel and Facilities.

  • Date: Tuesday, July 13, 2021
  • Time: 12:00-1:00 p.m. ET
  • Registration: There is no registration for this webinar. View the webinar details for call-in information.

View the Webinar Details

2. Lyra SARS-CoV-2 Assay (M120) by Quidel: Class I Recall – Due to Risk of False Negative Results

ISSUE: Quidel is recalling the Lyra SARS-CoV-2 Assay (M120) due to a significant risk of false negative results for patients with relatively high amounts of SARS‐CoV‐2 virus potentially causing the PCR amplification to occur before a cycle‐threshold (Ct) value of ≤5 when using the following thermocyclers:

  • ThermoFisher QuantStudio 7 Pro
  • Applied Biosystems 7500 Fast Dx
  • Applied Biosystems 7500
  • Bio-Rad CFX96 Touch
  • Roche LightCycler 480 or
  • Qiagen RotorGene MDx)

Read More »

Credit: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services


         Credit: U.S. Department of Homeland Security 

Credit: Federal Emergency Management Agency

Credit: U.S. Fire Administration


1. Virtual Whole-of-Government R&D Showcase

In the face of emergent threats, securing the homeland requires a whole-of-government approach to solving problems. The Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) is convening experts across U.S. Government research organizations and states and localities to showcase how investments in research, science, and innovation are saving lives and moving the country forward.


JUNE 21 – Series 1: Enhancing Public Health Security and Resilience

JULY 12 – Series 2: Building Resilience and Innovation Equity

JULY 26 – Series 3: Mitigating Evolving Threats and Understanding the Convergence of Breakthrough Technologies

AUGUST 9 – Series 4: Building Whole-of-Government R&D Partnerships


2. The InfoGram

  • Fireshed Registry helps address the growing wildfire threat
  • Project Jack Rabbit assesses chemical threats with rapid, large-scale chemical release trials
  • CISA and FBI launch Operation Flashpoint to raise awareness about how to prevent bomb making
  • NIST 2021 Disaster Resilience Symposium July 20 and 21
  • Cyber Threats

Read More »

3. U.S. Fire Administration Digest: July 9, 2021

  • Funding for public safety communications
  • Focus on fire safety
    • People with disabilities
  • National Fire Academy vacancy opportunties
  • Recent firefighter fatalities reported to USFA
  • Home fire deaths 

Read More »
Source: U.S. Fire Administration 

Credit: Virginia Department of Emergency Management

Course Offerings

1. ICS 300 Intermediate ICS for Expanding Incidents (Multiple Dates)
This 21-hour course is designed for front-line personnel with supervisory responsibilities to serve in a command or general staff position. The curriculum includes instruction in general principles associated with incident command, along with various tabletop exercises that allow students to put this knowledge to practical use.
Read More »

2. ICS 400 Advanced ICS (Multiple Dates)
This training is a 15-hour course that provides training on the advanced resource management provisions of the Incident Command System (ICS). Course topics include explaining the special management challenges of major incidents such as unified command, multi-agency coordination systems, and emergency operations centers, as well as explaining how Multi-Agency Coordination Systems (MACS) are established and interface with emergency operations centers.
Read More »

3. G191 Incident Command System/Emergency Operations Center Interface (Multiple Dates)
This 8 hour course works best when delivered to Incident Command System and Emergency Operations Center personnel from the same community. The course provides an opportunity for participants to begin developing an ICS/EOC interface for their community. The course reviews ICS and EOC responsibilities and functions and depends heavily on exercises and group discussions to formulate the interface.
Read More »

4. FEMA PER386 Whole Community Inclusive Economic Recovery Course (Multiple Dates)
An introduction to economic recovery planning using a method in which the entire community is empowered to work collaboratively in preparation, mitigation, response, and in recovery from a disaster.
Read More »

5. G205 Recovery from Disaster
Fairfax County is hosting the G0205: Recovery from Disaster Course has been scheduled and is available in the COVLC. This course provides an introduction to disaster recovery principles and includes current recovery practices and policies as outlined in the National Disaster Recovery Framework (NDRF). Case studies and activities are included in the course to support participant learning. Access to and use of a variety of resources for recovery planning are taught in the course, including a FEMA online Community Recovery Management Toolkit (CRMT) and a Resource Library associated with the Recovery Pre-Disaster Planning Guide for Local Governments (RPPG-L) that contains links to model plans, templates, tools, lessons learned, best practices, and a range of supplemental reference materials and related pre-disaster planning and disaster recovery resources. Prerequisites: ICS 100 is a suggested prerequisite. IS-2900: National Disaster Recovery Framework (NDRF) Overview is strongly recommended, but not required.

Dates: October 6-7, 2021
Time: 8:30am – 4:30pm
Location: VDEM-Room 2115, VDEM-McConnell PSTOCB (MPSTOC)

6. K0419 Shelter Field Guide Training for State and Local Communities – Virtual (Multiple Dates)
An introduction to economic recovery planning using a method in which the entire community is empowered to work collaboratively in preparation, mitigation, response, and in recovery from a disaster.
Read More »

1. What matters has changed: Why collaboration between supply chain, clinical and distribution partners is crucial

Respiratory season will be back with a vengeance. Are your facilities and supply chain ready?

As supply chain plays a bigger role in cost, quality and outcomes, collaboration is more important than ever. The acceleration of patient care into non-acute settings requires alignment with new stakeholders, broader capabilities and strategic partners.
Join Becker’s Healthcare to learn:

  • How to solve staffing and productivity challenges through standardized and automated operations
  • How to build an effective lab strategy with point-of-care diagnostic testing that helps provide a quicker, more accurate diagnosis and improve patient outcomes
  • How to prepare for respiratory season through collaboration with clinicians, supply chain and non-acute facilities to formulate and effective plan to help fight this flu season.

Wednesday, July 28th, 2021 | 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM CT
Can’t attend live? No worries,
 register now and we will send the recorded version for you to view at your convenience following the webinar.

Source: Hospital Healthcare Education of Beckers Healthcare

2. PPE: Evaluating What’s In Your Supply

Facilities need to continually reevaluate usage of personal protective equipment approved under Emergency Use Authorization.
Those who have purchased/are purchasing personal protective equipment (PPE) under Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) should continually evaluate their stock to verify that items remain under revised EUA. Many EUAs have now been repealed for a variety of reasons or have been allowed to expire.
This article
, written by Dr. Shawn Gibbs (PhD, MBA, CIH), Dean of the Texas A&M School of Public Health and member of the NETEC PPE Working Group, has several resources (also linked below) that will allow you to check if your current EUA PPE remains authorized. We recommend that you check these websites frequently until your organization is back to using only fully approved PPE.

Some websites with EUA approved PPE:

Source: The National Ebola Training and Educations Center

3. Experts brace for severe flu season

Health experts are bracing for a severe 2021-22 flu season, CNBC reported July 7.

“Since our COVID mitigation measures prevented influenza transmission last year, there are not a whole lot of people who were recently infected,” Lauren Ancel Myers, PhD, an epidemiologist and director of the University of Texas at Austin’s COVID-19 Modeling Consortium, told CNBC. “So we may be entering flu season with a higher level of susceptibility than usual, which could exacerbate the risks.”

This flu season’s severity may also depend on the virus’ evolution and American’s personal decisions about whether they get a flu shot or take additional precautions if the virus does start spreading widely, Dr. Ancel Meyers said. 

Lynnette Brammer, who oversees the CDC’s Domestic Influenza Surveillance Team, said the agency is preparing for flu circulation to return to levels seen before the pandemic given that other respiratory virus levels that fell during the pandemic, such as the respiratory syncytial virus, are already showing unseasonable increases. 

“We anticipate that something similar may happen with flu, especially as community mitigation efforts continue to be relaxed,” she told CNBC.

To read the full article, click here

Source: Mackenzie Bean of BECKER’S HOSPITAL REVIEW

4. Life Safety (LS) Chapter EP Updates

Effective January 1, 2022, Element(s)of Performance for LS.02.01.35 (equipment for extinguishing fires) is changing. Details of the changes are in the link below.
Read More »
Source: The Joint Commission

5. ‘We don’t need a lot of noise. Only money’: Ransomware group demands $70M from major software company 

The REvil ransomware gang is trying to extort $70 million from IT security management software company Kaseya, The Wall Street Journal reports. 

About 50 of Kaseya’s customers have been compromised by REvil’s July 2 attack, and about 40 of those customers are manager service providers. Security experts estimate that at least 200 companies in the U.S. have been affected, according to Newsweek. Most of the organizations affected are small and medium-size institutions, cybersecurity experts told the Journal

REvil is requesting $70 million to unlock all the systems, but victims of the attack have been told they can pay varying amounts between $25,000 and $5 million directly to REvil to unlock their systems if nobody pays the $70 million. REvil said that upon payment, they will release a “universal decryptor” that would unlock computers that had been encrypted and compromised by the attack, according to a July 4 note posted to the group’s website, according to the Journal

Kaseya CEO Fred Voccola declined the Journal‘s request to comment about payments. 

The Journal reached one of REvil’s members through an intermediary for comment about the attack. The ransomware gang member said: “We don’t need a lot of noise. Only money.”

Last month, REvicarried out a ransomware attack on Las Vegas-based University Medical Center and posted personal data belonging to an unknown number of patients online to its hacker group website.
Source: Jackie Drees of BECKER’S HEALTH IT

6. Amid rising COVID-19 cases, delta variant & July 4 collision has some experts ‘very concerned’

Some experts are voicing concerns about potential upcoming holiday-related COVID-19 surges, citing the rapidly spreading delta variant and pockets of the U.S. reporting particularly low vaccination rates.

Current U.S. trends 

New COVID-19 cases are now increasing, a change from previous declines over the last couple of weeks. Nationwide, daily cases have risen 5 percent over the last 14 days, as of July 6, according to The New York Times.

What we know about the rapidly spreading delta variant

The delta coronavirus variant, first identified in India, is now the most commonly circulating strain in the U.S., according to sequencing data.

Read More »
Source: Gabrielle Masson of BECKER’S HOSPITAL REVIEW

7. Nearly 15 million people missed 2nd COVID-19 shot, CDC says

Almost 15 million people have missed their second COVID-19 vaccine dose, according to CDC data cited by The Washington Post. 

That number means nearly 11 percent of people who had sufficient time to get their second dose missed the ideal window, the Post reported July 2. That is an increase from 8 percent earlier in the year, which a CDC spokesperson told the Post was “not unexpected.” 

The CDC considers a second dose to be missed if more than 42 days passed since the first dose. However, the CDC said individuals who don’t get the second shot in that time frame don’t have to start over to be fully vaccinated; there’s just less data on the effectiveness of a second dose received more than 42 days after the first, the Post reported. 

Health officials have said people skip their second doses for various reasons, such as thinking they only need one to be protected and to avoid the side effects that can come with the second dose. Some simply miss their appointments and either can’t or don’t reschedule, the Post reported.

But health experts say getting both doses of an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine will be critical to combat the delta variant. A U.K. study published in May found that Pfizer’s vaccine was just 33 percent effective against the delta variant in preventing symptomatic disease after a single dose and 88 percent effective after two doses, the Post reported. 

Read the full article here
Source: Maia Anderson of BECKER’S HOSPITAL REVIEW

8. Blood shortages delaying surgeries across US

U.S. hospitals are being forced to postpone surgeries in the face of a national blood shortage, CBS News reported July 6. 

Some blood centers are down to a one-day supply, according to CBS News. OneBlood, the largest blood center in the Southeast U.S., told the broadcaster: “The donors are not in the traditional locations anymore. We lost large corporations, religious organizations, movie theater drives. Festivals that were taking place ended.”

Before the pandemic forced schools to switch to virtual learning, schools made up 25 percent of blood collections. Demand for blood products is also now up 10 percent nationwide as pandemic restrictions ease, CBS News reported. 

Paresh Shah, MD, surgeon in chief at NYU Langone Health in New York City, told CBS News the system came close to delaying some scheduled surgeries. 

“There’s this huge backlog of operations that really needed to get done,” Dr. Shah said. “We were down to such a low inventory of blood that if we had one major transfusion event, we would have been depleted completely.”

Read the full article here

Source: Maia Anderson of BECKER’S HOSPITAL REVIEW