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  1. Manion, Pat MS, RN, CCRN, CEN

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The Society of Trauma Nurses Disaster Committee is dedicated to promoting the role of the trauma nurse in a disaster/mass casualty event. Since commencing in the Chair roles, Diane Dubinski and Sharon Lown have worked on the development of the committee goals:


1. Identify and disseminate information on standards of practice related to disaster/mass casualty education.


2. Collaboration to facilitate the inclusion of the trauma nurse as an integral component of disaster/mass casualty planning.



In April 2007, Diane and Sharon represented the STN at the Nursing Emergency Preparedness Education Coalition (formerly International Nursing Coalition for Mass Casualty Education) coordinated by Vanderbilt University School of Nursing. The purpose of the Nursing Emergency Preparedness Education Coalition is to facilitate the systematic development of policies related to mass casualty events as they influence the public health infrastructure and impact on nursing practice, education, research, and regulation. Their Web site http://www.nursing.vanderbilt.edu/incmce/index provides information about the organization in addition to links to other helpful resources.


At the 2008 STN conference in New Orleans, a 1-day preconference workshop was conducted on disaster emergency preparedness. The course covered the basic principles of disaster management that acute care providers-ie, the likely first receivers of mass casualties in most disasters who will be on the front lines of initial medical care-must know to effectively cope with these challenging events and also to provide the resources for the more comprehensive study of topics and issues that may be of further interest.


Our second annual disaster committee was well attended with approximately 30 delegates with an interest in disaster management. This forum facilitated the sharing of ideas in relation to future conference workshops on disaster management, the development of a resource chapter for the advanced trauma care nursing course resource manual, and the revision of a position statement on the role of trauma nurses in disaster.


Disasters and emergency preparedness will also feature in next year's STN conference with ideas for sessions and presenters being discussed with the conference organizing committee.


Contact details about the Disaster Committee are available on the STN Web site.