The National Fire Protection Association and ASTM International are joining forces to help the growing number of public safety professionals who want to use drones – also known as unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) – to help protect and save lives. The two standards developers signed a Memorandum of Understanding to support a joint working group of about two dozen top experts in public safety and drone technology.
The Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate released its 2018 Mobile Security Research and Development (R&D) Program Guide. The informational guide features an in-depth overview of the Mobile Security R&D Program strategy as well as summaries of the program’s two project areas: Mobile Device Security and Mobile Application Security.
ASPR’s Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority sponsored a set of scientific studies at the University of Hertfordshire on chemical decontamination. The results of these studies, codified as the Primary Response Incident Scene Management (PRISM) Guidance for Chemical Incidents, will help local emergency management planners and first responders prepare for and respond to disasters involving chemical agents.
An annual assessment of the nation’s day-to-day readiness for managing health emergencies improved significantly over the past five years, though deep regional differences remain. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation released the 2018 National Health Security Preparedness Index, which analyzes 140 measures to calculate a composite score that provides the most comprehensive picture of health security available.
Dictum Health announced that North Huntingdon EMS/Rescue (NHEMS/R) has added the Dictum Health telehealth solution to their Community Paramedicine/Mobile Integrated Health program. Through the expansion of this program, NHEMS/R expects to collect more complete, timely data on frequent users of emergency medical services using Dictum Health's VER-MEDIC telehealth system and to reduce avoidable hospital visits.
The largest patient movement exercise in U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ history began to test the nationwide ability to move patients with highly infectious diseases safely and securely to regional treatment centers. The exercise focuses on moving seven people acting as patients with Ebola symptoms in different regions of the country.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced that it is conducting the 2018 National Level Exercise for the whole community, inviting government agencies, private sector and nonprofit organizations, and individuals to participate in the biennial exercise. The exercise will take place 30 April–11 May 2018. The National Level Exercise will test lessons learned from the unprecedented 2017 hurricane season across all levels of government and the private sector.
CARB-X is awarding Specific Diagnostics of Mountain View, California, funding to support the development of the company’s antibiotic susceptibility testing system, which promises accurate drug susceptibility and identification of superbugs within four hours of a positive blood sample, reducing the chance of life-threatening sepsis and other urgent complications of blood infections.
Health departments working with the Centers for Disease Control’s (CDC) Antibiotic Resistance Lab Network found more than 220 instances of germs with “unusual” antibiotic resistance genes in the United States last year. Germs with unusual resistance include those that cannot be killed by all or most antibiotics, are uncommon in a geographic area or the United States, or have specific genes that allow them to spread their resistance to other germs.
Reps. Tulsi Gabbard (HI-02) and Colleen Hanabusa (HI-01) introduced bipartisan legislation to strengthen civil defense preparedness in Hawai’i and across the country. The Civil Defense Preparedness Act of 2018 (H.R. 5399) would expand existing Department of Homeland Security terrorism and catastrophic event grant programs to include improving nuclear, biological, and chemical attack preparedness. These grants can be used for training, protective equipment, building reinforcements, and other community preparedness measures.