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ESTABLISHING A MASS CASUALTY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM ESTABLISHING A MASS CASUALTY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM PA N A M ERI CA N HEA LT H ORGA N I ZAT I ON PA N A M ERI CA N HEA LT H ORGA N I ZAT I ON EST EST ABLI SHI NG A ABLI SHI NG A M ASS CASUAL M ASS CASUAL TY TY M ANAGEM ENT SYSTEM M ANAGEM ENT SYSTEM Pan Amer i can Heal t h Or gani zat i on Pan Amer i can Sani t ar y Bur eau, Regi onal Of f i ce of t he Wor l d Heal t h Or gani zat i on Washi ngt on, D.C., 2001 © Pan A
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  ESTABLISHINGA MASS CASUALTYMANAGEMENTSYSTEMESTABLISHINGA MASS CASUALTYMANAGEMENTSYSTEM PAN AMERICAN HEALTH ORGANIZATIONPAN AMERICAN HEALTH ORGANIZATION  ESTESTABLISHING AABLISHING A MASS CASUALMASS CASUALTYTYMANAGEMENT SYSTEMMANAGEMENT SYSTEM Pan American Health Organization Pan American Sanitary Bureau, Regional Office of the World Health Organization Washington, D.C., 2001  © Pan American Health Organization, 1995Reprinted, 2001 A publication of the Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief Coordination Program, PAHO/WHO.The views expressed, the recommendations formulated, and the designations employed in this publica-tion do not necessarily reflect the current policies or opinions of the Pan American Health Organizationor of its Member States.The Pan American Health Organization welcomes requests for permission to reproduce or translate, inpart or in full this publication. Applications and inquiries should be addressed to the Program onEmergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief, Pan American Health Organization, 525 Twenty-thirdStreet, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20037, USA; fax (202) 775-4578; e-mail: disaster-publications@paho.org.The production of this publication has been made possible through the financial support of theInternational Humanitarian Assistance Division of the Canadian International Development Agency (IHA/CIDA), the Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance of the U.S. Agency for International Development (OFDA/AID), the Department for International Development of the U.K. (DFID), and the French Ministry of Cooperation and Cultural Affairs.    Also published in Spanish with the title:  Establecimiento de un sistema de atención de víctimas en masa PAHO Cataloguing-in-Publication Pan American Health OrganizationEstablishing a mass casualty management system Washington, D.C.: PAHO, ©2001.58 p.ISBN 92 75 12346 2I. title1. DISASTER PLANNING2. DISASTER EMERGENCIES3. EVACUATION4. RISK ASSESSMENTNLM WX215.P187 2001  iii  When an accident or disaster involving large numbers of injuries occurs,the first to provide emergency assistance are communities closest to the siteof the incident.During the last 20 years the Caribbean and Latin Americahave given special attention to training emergency personnel in triage and inproviding first aid either at the site of an accident or disaster,or at the hos-pital.The entire Region is now familiar with methods of classifying casualties,and this process has proved to be the most efficient means of ensuring sur- vival of the injured in a mass casualty situation.However,there are still seri-ous gaps in the coordination process,a situation that is most pronounced inremote areas or those with limited resources.Many lives have been lost in mass casualty situations because resources were not mobilized efficiently.The challenge we face is this:the more scarcethe resources,the more efficient the organization must be.This publicationdescribes the steps to designing a mass casualty management system that willensure the highest possible survival rate.It focuses on the involvement of police,firefighters,Red Cross volunteers,health center and hospital staff.If these professionals form part of the structure that we refer to as the masscasualty management “system”in this publication,they can positively con-tribute to saving lives. We hope that this publication will provide the necessary information toguide disaster managers and health care professionals in establishing or reviewing their own mass casualty management system.George A.O.AlleyneDirector,Pan American Health Organization PREFACE
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