Paragould Hospital Implements New Disaster Plan

OCTOBER 18, 2006 - Posted at 11:26 a.m. CDT

PARAGOULD, AR - Arkansas Methodist Medical Center is rolling out a new way to manage the healthcare facility in the event of local or regional disasters or emergencies.

Basing their plan on a system known as Hospital Emergency Incident Command System (HEICS), AMMC is improving its disaster plan to include a tool that has already been proven valuable to assisting hospitals serving in time of crises and resuming normal operations as soon as possible.

"The system is designed to operate flexibly, utilizing whatever staff members are available on location," said AMMC Security Director Brent Cox.  "You can't write a plan assuming that one particular staff member will be available to carry out a specific task."

AMMC officials are already participating in county disaster drills of various types.  Future in-house drills, known as 'table tops,' will be conducted on a regular basis to familiarize all levels of employees with HEICS procedures.