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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2014, 11(9), 9712-9722; doi:10.3390/ijerph110909712

A Conceptual Framework to Measure Systems’ Performance during Emergency Preparedness Exercises

1
Department of Biostatistics, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA 02115, USA
2
Division of Policy Translation and Leadership Development, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA 02115, USA
3
Department of Emergency Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Zero Emerson Place, Boston, MA 02114, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 29 July 2014 / Revised: 10 September 2014 / Accepted: 11 September 2014 / Published: 17 September 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Preparedness and Emergency Response)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [468 KB, uploaded 17 September 2014]   |  

Abstract

Large-scale public health emergencies require a sophisticated, coordinated response involving multiple entities to protect health and minimize suffering. However, the rarity of such emergencies presents a barrier to gathering observational data about the effectiveness of the public health response before such events occur. For this reason, public health practitioners increasingly have relied on simulated emergencies, known as “exercises” as proxies to test their emergency capabilities. However, the formal evaluation of performance in these exercises, historically has been inconsistent, and there is little research to describe how data acquired from simulated emergencies actually support conclusions about the quality of the public health emergency response system. Over the past six years, we have designed and evaluated more than seventy public health emergency exercises, collaborating with public health agencies, hospitals and others to test a wide variety of systems and their capabilities. Using the data and experience that we gathered, we have developed a conceptual framework that describes the essential elements necessary to consider when applying performance measurement science to public health emergency exercises. We suggest that this framework may assist practitioners and researchers who wish to better measure performance in exercises and to improve public health emergency preparedness. View Full-Text
Keywords: emergency preparedness; emergency preparedness exercise; exercise evaluation; measuring preparedness; performance measurement emergency preparedness; emergency preparedness exercise; exercise evaluation; measuring preparedness; performance measurement
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Savoia, E.; Agboola, F.; Biddinger, P.D. A Conceptual Framework to Measure Systems’ Performance during Emergency Preparedness Exercises. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2014, 11, 9712-9722.

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