A Shelter In Place plan is used when there is “reasonable assurance that movement of people will endanger them more than allowing them to remain in place” (Casserly & Bermudez, 2011). There is usually a natural disaster or a hazardous outdoor atmosphere, such as air-borne chemicals or radiation, that is an imminent threat. SIP plans can also be used during an active shooter situation or even an act of terrorism.
The video “Emergency Preparedness” video I watched was an excellent demonstration of what a SIP looks like in action, as well as how to stay calm. A few things I noticed right away was how proactive the Unit Manager was. Days before the storm was predicted to hit, she was already on the phone rescheduling appointments and refilling prescriptions.
They had about 3 days worth of food and supplies and a generator, but their maintenance guy was concerned it wouldn’t last that long even if refueled. They ended up making it through the storm, but after the 3rd day the generator went out leaving them with no AC. The administrator was hesitant about evacuating, saying it was a last resort, but after one patient passed out they decided to evacuate.
It did not seem like their SIP plan was spelled out clearly, or that they had practiced/drilled, but from watching the video here were my take-a-aways:
- You must be prepared,
- You will have to make decisions on the fly,
- You must stay calm,
- You must work together as a team.
I do recommend watching the video. It was very insightful 🙂
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