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An insight into the Emergency Preparedness Resilience and Response team

Monday, 28 February, 2022
An insight into the Emergency Preparedness Resilience and Response team

The Emergency Preparedness Resilience and Response (EPRR) team are just a small team with a large remit.  We support individuals and teams to effectively respond, adapt and recover from a range of emergencies, and most importantly put procedures in place to ensure continuity of critical service provision – the Trust has to continue delivering services to patients no matter what incident may occur.

EPRR is diverse to say the least, it is exciting because we never know what is going to happen next –no two days are ever alike. We get to work across the Trust with people from all different teams and departments.  It is really rewarding to meet people from a variety of disciplines and co-delivering solutions for the benefit of the Trust and our patients.  Rapport is key to our work, and our main mantra is ‘there’s no such thing as a silly question’ often these lead to the best discussion and solutions.

So what do we do?  On a daily basis we begin by compiling information from various SitReps to provide information for internal and external stakeholders.  It is really interesting because we get a real sense of what is going on out there in the region and not just locally for the Trust. Often in corporate services you can be isolated from the issues faced by our colleagues on the wards or in the ED, but collating these reports mean we are in touch with what is happening across many disciplines.

Our projects range from reviewing and updating the Emergency Response Guides to writing Standing Operating Procedures (SOPs) for new IT systems or processes.   This requires good organisation and analytical skills to filter what is of use and what is not. Business continuity requires you to think logically and identify connections that are often overlooked.  We have a consistent review process of all of our plans and policies and we write and facilitate exercises to test these plans – so we really do get the opportunity to be creative!

Whenever there is a business critical incident (think COVID!) we support with Gold Control and making sure that all participants have the relevant training in preparation. Every day we undertake Horizon scanning – watching the news understanding what is happening around the country.  We have an unorthodox approach in EPRR – In the winter we are thinking about heatwaves and in the summer we are planning for winter!

We usually have at least one training session per week. We are responsible for training ED staff in Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) response as well as incident management. We deliver training for incident coordination – whether that be an incident within your department or a Trustwide incident requiring multi-layer response.  A key campaign we have been involved with recently is tailgating awareness, working closely with the Comms teams to get the messages out of the importance of knowing who is following you into secure areas for the safety of staff and patients.  Using our close links with Learning & Development we have now managed to get a Tailgating module onto the induction package so everyone coming into the Trust also understands the importance of the need to challenge people who are gaining access to areas they shouldn’t be in.

EPRR is a diverse and challenging career, ideal for anyone who wants something a little different, who can adapt to fast moving challenges or loves a little excitement. If you would like further information about the work done by the Emergency Preparedness Team please contact us on emergencypreparednessteam@nhct.nhs.uk

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