Wednesday, 22nd February 2012
National Preparedness: Countermeasures for Thermal Burns
Source: Government Accountability Office
From the report:
A failed car bomb attempt in New York City in spring 2010 underscored the nation’s vulnerability to intentional terrorist threats from explosive devices, such as conventional explosives, radiological “dirty bombs,” and nuclear weapons. The blast and subsequent fires from such weapons could inflict serious thermal burns; in the case of a nuclear detonation, these injuries could affect hundreds to thousands of people. In such an attack, stabilizing individuals with burns and other injuries would be an immediate priority. Medical care for thermal burns in a mass casualty incident would require the ready availability of large quantities of medical countermeasures, such as pain medications, wound dressings, and intravenous fluids, both on-site and in emergency treatment facilities.
From the summary:
The SNS contains supportive care items for thermal burns, such as bandages, pain medications, intravenous fluids, and topical antimicrobial cream needed for the immediate treatment of burn injuries to reduce the risk of infection and stabilize injured individuals. HHS officials told us that the goal of the SNS is to supplement state and local supplies used for immediate care in the initial response—identified as within 72 hours of sustaining injury. CDC compiled supplies needed for the immediate treatment of burn injuries into kits in 2002 and 2003, based on information provided at that time by burn experts about needed items. Because most medical countermeasures for thermal burns can be found in local hospitals, countermeasures in the SNS would be used to supplement local supplies and inventories, with kits deployed within 24 to 48 hours of notification. The SNS does not contain other countermeasures that may be available for both the immediate care and the longer-term treatment of burn injuries. However, HHS is currently considering whether to acquire some additional countermeasures, including those for longer-term treatment of burn injuries.
+ Direct link to full report (PDF; 458 KB)
By Heather Negley
An Info Pro, librarian, entrepreneur, author, worldwide connector and book-lover, Heather Negley is recognized for her new ways of thinking about librarianship, research, social media and creativity. Heather is the founder of HelpALibrarian.com and Zing Information Services. She has most recently been an Information Research Specialist with the Congressional Research Service at the Library of Congress where she provided business research for members of Congress and their staffs. Heather also worked as a research reporter for U.S. News and World Report and as a technical advertising producer on the washingtonpost.com. She received her MS in Library and Information Science from Simmons College in Boston, MA.
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