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Palo Alto County Hospital Conducts Active Shooter Drill

By Staff | Nov 24, 2017
DISASTER PREPAREDNESS DRILL – Having run disaster drills in the past for fire and tornadoes, Palo Alto County Health Systems tested their procedures for handling an active shooter on Friday, Nov. 3. The drill included law enforcement (city and county), Emergency Management Commission Coordinator Mark Hunefeld, ambulance personal as well as hospital staff. Pictured In Front: John Hansen, the Shooter. Standing (left to right): Dave Peters, Mercedes DePyper, McKinzie DePyper, Brandi Nelson, Emma Dupic, Bobbie Miller and Sara Travis.
THE SHOOTER could be anyone. You might know him or her and they might look like you or me. Watch for signs something could be wrong: agitation, aggressive behavior, anything that might be suspicious. Pictured: John Hansen is ready to shoot the person behind the desk because he wants information that cannot be given out. In the back Marty Bergstrom watches to critique this situation.

No one wants to think it could happen here, but with the ever changing world around us, nothing is impossible. This is what made the disaster drill for an ‘Active Shooter’ event that was held at the Palo Alto County Hospital on Friday, November 3, an important lesson for not only hospital staff but law enforcement and emergency management as well. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid recently required that health care facilities practice disaster protocols to be prepared in the case of an emergency.

The active shooter drill included a single shooter and seven victims throughout the hospital. The idea was to be able to review and put into practice the procedure and protocol in place at the hospital. Once the drill was complete, a critiquing of how the incident was handled was done. Elements of the procedure and protocol was examined to see if any changes need to be made going forward to minimize risks toward patients and staff.