Pharmacy Leader's Role in Hospital Emergency Preparedness Planning

Hosp Pharm. 2014 Apr;49(4):398-404. doi: 10.1310/hpj4904-398.


The Director's Forum column is designed to guide pharmacy leaders in establishing patient-centered services in hospitals and health systems. Environmental disasters and terrorist attacks demonstrate that it is imperative for both a hospital and community to have an emergency preparedness plan. The goal of this article is to provide health-system pharmacy leaders with a practical approach in developing an emergency operations plan (EOP) that can be activated in the event of a disaster. Pharmacy leaders should (1) review government and community disaster responses and understand the movement of drug supply for each response, (2) create a pharmacy disaster plan, (3) list the essential medications and determine their inventory levels, and (4) establish a staff training program to enhance understanding and implementation of the EOP. If successfully developed and executed, a hospital pharmacy department's EOP has a high rating of success in meeting patient-centered needs in the unforeseen event of a disaster.