August 23 – 29, 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.

VDH has developed a COVID-19 Level of Community Transmission dashboard. This dashboard indicates the severity of the case counts in the local jurisdictions. Click here to view the dashboard.


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

FDA COVID-19 Vaccine News and Updates

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is developing an emergency regulation requiring staff vaccinations within the nation’s more than 15,000 Medicare and Medicaid-participating nursing homes.
This new requirement is a key component of protecting the health and safety of nursing home residents and staff by ensuring that all nursing home staff receive COVID-19 vaccinations. Over the past several months, millions of vaccinations have been administered to nursing home residents and staff, and these vaccines have shown to help prevent COVID-19 and have proven to be effective against the Delta variant.
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         Credit: U.S. Department of Homeland Security 

Credit: Federal Emergency Management Agency

Credit: U.S. Fire Administration


1. Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic: Medical Staffing Requests

State, Tribal and Territorial (STT) governments across the nation are experiencing increases in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, resulting in renewed strains on medical personnel availability. FEMA and our interagency partners are working to support requests for additional medical staff and recognize there may be more solutions than the federal government alone can provide. Given the possible scarcity of medical personnel resources, the federal government is asking STT partners to consider the following items prior to requesting direct federal assistance for medical staff.
FEMA and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) have worked closely with STT governments, hospitals, health care systems, long-term care facilities, and local communities since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.  As cases rise and new variants emerge, all public and private organizations should continue to work through their established processes for emergencies and disasters. Typically, these processes begin with  local communities’, healthcare systems and facilities’, or medical associations interfacing with their STT departments of public health and emergency management agency for any unmet needs. For tribal nations, these processes may involve coordinating with the Indian Health Service. Unmet needs can only be identified and resourced by FEMA and HHS through this process of communication.
When ready to submit a medical staffing request, STTs will work through their assigned FEMA and HHS regional point of contact. For a request to be filled, the STT community must first consider and address these actions –
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2. The InfoGram

  • Chemical Safety Board releases new video of fatal hydrogen sulfide release
  • CISA releases Public Safety Communications and Cyber Resiliency Toolkit
  • FEMA focuses on hazard mitigation in August with historic new funding, grant announcements and training opportunities
  • Intermediate Incident Command System (ICS 300) training available in blended, virtual format
  • and more

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3. U.S. Fire Administration Digest: August 19, 2021

  • Electric vehicle home charging: safety tips for your community
  • UL webinars share lithium-ion battery science for safe response
  • New pipeline preparedness toolkit for fire departments
  • more

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4. FEMA Advisory: FEMA Extends Full Funding for COVID-19 Emergency Costs (August 17, 2021)

Today, President Biden announced continued support for COVID-19 response and recovery assistance by extending 100% federal funding to state, local, tribal and territorial governments and certain private nonprofits for eligible emergency actions through Dec. 31, 2021. This policy will also continue 100% reimbursement for costs associated with deployment of National Guard personnel under Title 32 Orders for COVID-19 missions.
This is an extension of the President’s order issued earlier this year for FEMA to fully reimburse governments at a 100% federal cost share through Sept. 30, 2021 for emergency response costs associated with COVID-19.  Today’s extension allows states to receive retroactive 100% federal reimbursement for costs associated with the safe opening and operation of public facilities dating back to Jan. 20, 2020.  Reimbursement is specifically for COVID-19 emergency and major disaster declarations through FEMA’s Public Assistance program.  FEMA will release an updated policy in the coming days supporting the President’s direction.

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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. BREAKING 2: It’s official: Nursing homes must vaccinate employees or lose Medicaid, Medicare funding

President Joe Biden announced late Wednesday afternoon that U.S. nursing homes must use workers vaccinated against COVID-19 or risk losing vital Medicare and Medicaid funding.
Providers immediately criticized the announcement for not including other healthcare sectors in the mandate.
“Vaccination mandates for healthcare personnel should be applied to all healthcare settings. Without this, nursing homes face a disastrous workforce challenge,” said American Health Care Association President and CEO Mark Parkinson in a prepared statement that was echoed by LeadingAge President and CEO Katie Smith Sloan.
“Focusing only on nursing homes will cause vaccine hesitant workers to flee to other healthcare providers and leave many centers without adequate staff to care for residents. It will make an already difficult workforce shortage even worse,” Parkinson added. “The net effect of this action will be the opposite of its intent and will affect the ability to provide quality care to our residents.”
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Source: Danielle Brown of McKnight’s LONG-TERM CARE NEWS

2. COVID-19 vaccine requirement for nursing homes could lead to staff exodus, national association says

The American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living is expressing concern that a requirement that all nursing home workers be vaccinated against COVID-19 could become a “disastrous workforce challenge.”
The White House announced the vaccination requirement Aug. 18 as a condition for receiving federal funds.
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3. Number of US children hospitalized with COVID-19 hits record; Dallas out of pediatric ICU beds

More than 1,900 children in the U.S. were hospitalized with COVID-19 as of Aug. 14 — a record high since the start of the pandemic, CNBC reported.
At the same time, Dallas County’s pediatric intensive care units have no beds, CBS News reported.
“In Dallas, we have zero ICU beds left for children,” Clay Jenkins, Dallas County judge, said during an Aug. 13 news conference. “That means if your child’s in a car wreck, if your child has a congenital heart defect or something and needs an ICU bed, or more likely if they have COVID-19 and need an ICU bed, we don’t have one. Your child will wait for another child to die.” 
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Source: Erica Carbajal of BECKER’S HOSPITAL REVIEW

4. 10 numbers that show US hospital staffing strains

The Staffing strains have affected hospitals and health systems across the U.S. amid the latest COVID-19 wave. Here are 10 numbers showing how workforce shortages affect hospitals, by state:
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5. American College of Surgeons gives tips on conserving blood supply amid US shortage

The American College of Surgeons stressed the important role surgeons play in patient blood management in guidance released Aug. 11 for conserving blood supplies during the current national blood shortage.
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6. Now available: new ASPR Health Care Readiness Programs portfolio resources

The NHPP Branch has created a variety of fact sheets on the overall ASPR Health Care Readiness Programs Portfolio and its various core programs and activities. The fact sheets are: 

Source: IAEM

7. US to offer booster shots starting Sept. 20

The U.S. said Aug. 18 it is prepared to offer booster shots for all Americans who received two doses of Pfizer or Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine beginning the week of Sept. 20 and starting eight months after an individual’s second dose.
HHS said “the individuals who were fully vaccinated earliest in the vaccination rollout” will likely be the first ones who are eligible for boosters, including nursing homes residents, healthcare workers and Americans age 65 and older.
HHS said its plan is contingent upon FDA approval for COVID-19 boosters, which hasn’t been granted yet. The agency amended the emergency use authorizations for Pfizer’s and Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccines Aug. 12, allowing for a third dose in immunocompromised people, but not yet for the rest of the population.
“We also anticipate booster shots will likely be needed for people who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine,” HHS said in a statement. “Administration of the J&J vaccine did not begin in the U.S. until March 2021, and we expect more data on J&J in the next few weeks. With those data in hand, we will keep the public informed with a timely plan for J&J booster shots as well.”

8. Mississippi hospitals request more than 1,450 healthcare workers to address staff shortage

Mississippi health officials said hospitals there are requesting backup as they grapple with inadequate staffing amid the latest COVID-19 wave, according to the Clarion Ledger.
“Staffing for hospitals remains a critical need around the state, and we’re still nowhere near the staffing we need for the beds we need,” Jim Craig, senior deputy and director of health protection for the Mississippi State Department of Health, told reporters Aug. 18.
Mr. Craig said 73 hospitals have requested from the state more than 1,450 healthcare workers.  The additional staffing, he noted, would open 771 medical-surgical beds and 235 intensive care unit beds that are unstaffed.
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