August 16 – 22, 2021

Regional Coalition Meeting
The Northwest Region Healthcare Coalition will hold its monthly meeting Thursday September 9 beginning at 10:30 am. The agenda, the August meeting minutes, and the conference dial-in information will be re-sent, if needed, 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 VDH’s and VHHA’s respective websites.


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




  Credit: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


Credit: U.S. Food & Drug Administration

FDA COVID-19 Vaccine News and Updates
To read about news and updates from the FDA on the COVID-19 vaccines, click here.

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. The InfoGram

  • Webinar series from UL shares science relevant to lithium-ion battery safety for responders
  • NVFC and PHMSA offer pipeline response, planning, and preparedness toolkit for fire departments
  • Resources for ensuring inclusion of people with disabilities in emergency response plans
  • FAA hosts virtual UAS Symposium September 14-15, invites public safety partners to learn and discuss latest regulations on drones
  • and more

Read More »

2. U.S. Fire Administration Digest: August 12, 2021

  • Lightweight respirator on the way for wildland firefighters
  • Funding opportunities from FEMA
  • more

Read More »

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.
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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.
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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.
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4. 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)

5. 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.
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6. V450: ICS Train-the-Trainer (ICS100-400)
This train-the-trainer course is specifically for persons interested in teaching VDEM ICS sponsored courses for their agency or organization. Participants will learn valuable tips on how to teach each of the ICS courses from experienced instructors. Participants will review the content of each ICS course and develop teaching and facilitation strategies to support the delivery of ICS courses within their agency or organization. Upon successful completion of this course, individuals will be authorized to teach the Introduction, Basic, Intermediate, and Advanced Incident Command System courses (ICS 100 – 400), as well as the ICS for Senior Executives/Elected Officials course (ICS-402). Participants completing V450 must be available as an ICS Sponsored Instructor for at least 12 months after completing this class.

Dates: September 2-3,2021 or November 9-10, 2021
Time: 8:00am – 5:00pm
Location: VDEM Headquarters – Moorefield, 9711 Farrar Ct, North Chesterfield, VA 23236
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7. FEMA PER 386: Whole Community Inclusive Economic Recovery

FEMA PER 386, is an introduction to economic recovery planning using a whole community approach, in which the entire community works together in planning for economic recovery. 
This free virtual 4.5 hour course is designed to increase awareness of how inclusive collaborations with diverse populations can enhance community resilience and safety; and will introduce overarching tools, strategies, and opportunities to engage in the economic recovery (pre)-planning process through practical application.
Target Audience: Individuals or groups who may have a role in pre/post-disaster economic recovery planning, ie.. economic development districts, business and civic leaders, partner stakeholders, industry associations, large and small private sector representatives, local or regional jurisdictional representatives and community organizations. 
Length of Course: 4.5 participant hours with an additional 30 minutes after for Post-test and Evaluation.
Accommodations: Requested accommodations can be provided to ensure full participation in the course. Requests can be made during the registration process.
Date: September 28 morning session for Region 2 (9am EST start).
Class ID for Registration: 15444402 
Registration Link:

1. Medical group releases guidance on post-COVID-19 fatigue

The American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation has released the first clinical guidance on the treatment of post-COVID-19-related fatigue. It marks the first clinical guidance on treating long-haulers released since the CDC’s interim guidance issued June 14.
The guidance statement on long COVID-19 fatigue was published in The American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation’s PM&R journal Aug. 6. The organization plans to release additional long COVID-19 guidance statements on cognitive impairment, breathing discomfort, cardiac and autonomic issues, neuropsychology, and pediatrics. 
“The guidance statements are generally acceptable approaches to the assessment and treatment of [post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2, or PASC — the official term for long COVID-19],” said Benjamin Abramoff, MD, co-chair of the academy’s PASC collaborative. “The recommendations attempt to define practices that meet the needs of most patients in most circumstances. The ultimate judgement regarding care of a particular patient must be made by the clinician and patient in light of all the circumstances presented by that patient.” 
The fatigue guidance statement includes clinician recommendations on assessing and treating the condition among COVID-19 long-haulers. 
The organization also plans to lead webinars and other efforts to educate clinicians on the guidance. 
To view the full guidance statement, click here.
Source: Erica Carbajal of BECKER’S HOSPITAL REVIEW

2. How vaccination rates are changing in each state: Up in 40, down in 10

U.S. vaccination rates have risen by 5 percent in the past week, according to CDC data last updated Aug. 9.
Mississippi has seen the biggest increase in administered COVID-19 vaccines, with vaccination rates rising by 96 percent in the past week, according to The Washington Post‘s tracker of weekly change in vaccine administration.
Below are the 50 states and Washington, D.C., ranked by their weekly change in COVID-19 vaccines administered:
1. Mississippi: up 96 percent
2. Alaska: up 53 percent
3 Arizona: up 50 percent
4: Maine: up 46 percent
5. Alabama: up 42 percent
49. Virginia: down 12 percent

3. Hospitals, health systems mandating vaccines for workers

The number of hospitals and health systems requiring COVID-19 vaccination for employees is growing.
Here are the healthcare organizations that have announced mandates:
Virginia Commonwealth University Health System in Richmond announced Aug. 9 that it is requiring that employees be vaccinated. Health system employees must get their first vaccine dose by Sept. 15.
Mary Washington Healthcare in Fredericksburg, Va., will require its workforce to get vaccinated by Oct. 31, the health system said July 29. The requirement will apply to employees, medical staff and volunteers.
Valley Health, a Winchester, Va.-based health system with 6,300 employees and affiliated physicians, said July 19 that it will add COVID-19 vaccination to its list of required vaccinations for all employees, medical staff members and contractors. Health system officials said the standard is effective immediately for new employees, who must provide evidence of vaccination or complete the vaccination series two weeks before beginning work. Employees who are managers or above and medical staff members must provide evidence of prior completion of the vaccination series or receive their first dose by Aug. 16. Remaining staff have until Nov. 1 to either obtain an exemption or be fully vaccinated.
Inova Health System in Falls Church, Va. informed its 18,000 employees that they will have to be vaccinated by Sept. 1.
Read More »
Source: Kelly Gooch and Hannah Mitchell of BECKER’S HOSPITAL REVIEW

4. Data management issues hurt FEMA’s PPE distribution in early pandemic, inspector general report says

Data management issues hurt the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s handling of distribution of personal protective equipment during the early days of the pandemic, according to a report obtained by NBC News
The report, which has yet to be released, was written by Department of Homeland Security Inspector General Joseph Cuffari, who was appointed by former President Donald Trump. NBC News said Aug. 5 it had obtained a draft of the report. 
Mr. Cuffari says in the report that PPE struggles early in the pandemic were the fault of data management problems within FEMA, rather than issues within the White House’s COVID-19 task force.
But NBC News reported last year that White House COVID-19 task force officials often circumvented FEMA’s decision-making and distributed ventilators, PPE and government contracts to favored states and companies. 

Mr. Cuffari’s report claims that states and private entities requesting aid from FEMA were often unaware of how decisions were made and that FEMA was unable to accurately track requests. 
Read the full article here
Source: Maia Anderson of BECKER’S HOSPITAL REVIEW

5. OSHA cites 2 New Jersey providers over mask protocols

Two providers in New Jersey were cited by the U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration after an investigation determined they didn’t ensure nurses safely used respirators while administering flu shots and COVID-19 tests.
Medical facility Lakewood Resource and Referral Center and temporary staffing agency Homecare Therapies “failed to protect vital frontline healthcare workers from exposure to the coronavirus,” Paula Dixon-Roderick, OSHA area office director, said in an Aug. 4 news release.
OSHA began investigating Lakewood Resource and Referral Center in January and found the center didn’t provide medical evaluations to determine if employees could appropriately use respirators before requiring their use. The center didn’t fit test employees for respirators either, according OSHA, which levied a $273,064 fine against the organization.
Investigators reported similar findings against Homecare Therapies, which contracted with Lakewood Resource and Referral Center. OSHA fined the staffing agency $13,653.
The organizations can contest the findings. 
The citations come as OSHA is increasing focus on providers’ compliance with COVID-19 workplace safety rules. The rules, released June 10, require healthcare employers give workers paid time off to get vaccinated and to recover from any side effects.
Source: Morgan Haefner of BECKER’S HOSPITAL REVIEW

6. Mississippi health officials ask federal government for help, say state’s hospital system on brink of ‘failure’

Amid a COVID-19 surge and shortage of healthcare workers and beds, Mississippi health officials are saying the state’s hospital system is on the brink of failure and federal help is needed, according to The Washington Post.
“We’re going to see a lot of deaths in coming days; it’s just inevitable,” Thomas Dobbs, MD, state health officer, said at an Aug. 11 news conference, according to The Guardian.
As of Aug. 11, Mississippi had the second lowest vaccination rate in the U.S., with 35.36 percent of its population fully vaccinated. The majority — 97 percent — of COVID-19 patients are unvaccinated, Dr. Dobbs said, adding, “We wouldn’t be having the same situation at all if we had a higher vaccination rate.”
The state health department verified that it had asked the federal government to send a military hospital ship. Federal healthcare workers requested by the state are set to arrive Aug. 13, and officials said 10 additional ICU beds would be made available at two Veterans Affairs medical centers. 

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

7. About half of COVID-19 patients at Texas Children’s also have RSV

Among 45 pediatric COVID-19 patients at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston, at least 25 also have respiratory syncytial virus, the Houston Chronicle reported Aug. 11. 
James Versalovic, MD, interim pediatrician-in-chief at the hospital, said clinicians have identified “25 cases and counting” of kids coinfected with both COVID-19 and RSV across three of Texas Children’s campuses. More than half of the children with both illnesses have been hospitalized. 
About half of the hospital’s coinfected patients are infants, and most are children under 5, according to the Houston Chronicle.
“The delta variant is spreading like wildfire among children and adolescents in our region,” Dr. Versalovic told the news outlet, adding that the hospital has seen thousands of COVID-19 patients who have not required in-patient treatment. At the same time, children under the age of 12 are not yet eligible [sic] to receive [sic] the COVID-19 vaccine. 

Read More »
Source: Erica Carbajal of BECKER’S HOSPITAL REVIEW