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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Mass Casualty Management in the Emergency Department – Lessons Learned in Beirut, Lebanon - Part II


The first article in this series (Part I) discussed the abundant exposure of our emergency department (ED) to mass casualty incidents (MCIs), particularly over the past 14 years. This experience led us to define practical strategies that emergency departments can use to develop their own MCI response plans. In the first part, our main focus was to highlight the abrupt nature of MCIs and the subsequent need to use disaster drills. Additionally, we discussed the importance of having a tiered response and activation as well as other lessons learned from our experience to maximize the preparedness of the emergency department to receive mass casualty.In this article, we discuss the optimal way to triage patients. In addition, we will tackle the best methods for documentation and communication, which are vital yet overlooked during mass casualty incidents. We will also elaborate on what we learned from dealing with outbursts of anger and violence in the ED during MCIs and how to ensure the safety of the ED staff.

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