September 1, 2004 -- In an effort to help U.S. hospitals better understand and prepare themselves for Terror or other Mass Casualty Incidents, SSI will be presenting experts from the Rambam Medical Center in Israel, the leading hospital in MCI incidents in that country. The training program has been attended by more than 22 different countries, but this is the first time ever that it is being held in the United States. Participants will learn how to prepare the hospital for maximum efficiency in the event of an MCI, as well as dealing with the incident in order to save as many lives as possible.
"Our aim is to make hospitals as effective as possible in the light of increased warnings about terror and also in the event of any other emergency," states Henry Morgenstern, president of SSI. "We are particularly proud of the fact that Dr. Michaelson and Gila Hyams, two of the world's leading experts on MCI events, are presenting the one-day training program that will be held on November 16, 2004.
The training program for hospitals is being accompanied by the well-known SSI seminar on Suicide Terror, one of the deadly threats that emergency personnel may have to deal with. SSI's Israeli know-how in terror related incidents has already been given to agencies like the FBI and the Secret Service among many. Emergency responders will get a chance to hear first-hand how terrorists operate, how to prevent incidents and how to respond safely to incidents which may involve secondary bombs, the dreaded double event.
The San Diego Emergency Response Show is being held in an effort to help first responders better coordinate their efforts during critical incidents. Organizers of the Emergency Response 2004 Conference and Exposition (San Diego Convention Center, November 17-20, 2004) have taken major steps to enhance the show by providing a variety of new educational opportunities, networking events and a view of the industry's latest products and technologies.
The critical need for multi-agency coordination during disasters was highlighted most recently by the 9/11 Commission's findings that poor preparedness, lack of integration and communication difficulties hampered rescuers who responded to the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in New York City. Emergency Response 2004 is the only event that provides an expansive forum where all first-responder professionals (Fire/Rescue, Law Enforcement, EMS, Public Health, the Military, Homeland Security and Search and Rescue) can meet to discuss the challenges they face in responding to major incidents and how to best integrate their efforts. This year's theme of "Meeting the Challenges at Home" fosters a conference and exposition mission that offers attendees the opportunity to gain knowledge that can be put to use when called to action in their own response areas.
"The 9/11 Commission's findings are just the latest evidence that better integration and communications among responding agencies are critical to minimizing death and destruction during a disaster," said James T. McKenna, Conference chairman.