Hospital Disaster Planning, Preparedness and Training
Emergency planning and realistic disaster simulations for staff at hospitals in Bhutan, plus mitigations to keep the facilities functioning post disaster.
Training the head maintenance engineer at Bhutan’s national referral hospital how to anchor heavy equipment (in this case an autoclave), to prevent toppling during an earthquake.
When a big earthquake strikes Bhutan, there will be great demand for medical care. But a hospital may be crippled without power, water, medical gas, communication, and transportation. Equipment may break and be rendered useless. Staff and patients may be injured by falling debris.
We're helping Bhutan's Ministry of Health plan ahead for these damaging impacts, so that the National Referral Hospital and two district hospitals will be safe and ready to function.
We prioritized short-term and long-term steps to safeguard the hospitals. We found that even the newer facilities need back-up utilities. While many of the main medical buildings meet recent seismic safety codes, a number of other buildings do not--and those need seismic strengthening.
For an immediate boost in readiness, we trained hospital engineers to anchor and brace essential equipment. And we prepared staff and medical personnel for hazards they will encounter.
Hospital administrators and the Ministry of Health now have a detailed roadmap for action. Work is underway on near-term improvements, though it may take years to replace older, seismically vulnerable buildings.
We were engaged by World Health Organization (WHO) for these assessments, with support from the European Commission Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection.
Bhutan Hospital Assessment Reports:
Report on Jigme Dorji Wangchuck National Referral Hospital, Bhutan
Report on Trashigang District Hospital, Bhutan
Report on Trashiyangtse District Hospital, Bhutan
See follow-up hospital disaster planning:
See our News post: Students Put this Hospital to a Test