By Jacqueline Chandler, Public Affairs Region VI
On June 28, more than three dozen emergency management and healthcare professionals gathered for the June FEMA Think Tank, at the University of Texas Medical School at Houston, where 500 callers dialed into the conference call. The issues discussed prompted the event to trend as the seventh most talked about topic on Twitter for the day.
The FEMA Think Tank began with welcoming remarks from FEMA Deputy Administrator Rich Serino, Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response in the U.S. Department of Heath and Human Services Dr. Nicole Lurie, Texas Medical Center Senior Vice President Edgar Tucker and FEMA Region VI Acting Administrator Tony Robinson.
What followed was two hours of open, candid and productive discussions on improving communication between emergency management, healthcare and public health sectors, the concept of Medical Incident Support Teams, and a best practice from the Tennessee Recovery Project on Creative Crisis Counseling.
The FEMA Think Tank is a national community conversation that enlists participation from all sectors of the communities across the nation interested in emergency management. These Think Tank conference calls are held monthly and hosted by Serino from different cities throughout the U.S. with a specific topic geared to each event. The goal is to stimulate ideas, address challenges and share best practices. The calls include a diverse audience from state, local, tribal and federal emergency managers, first responders, and others concerned about helping our communities prepare for, respond to, and recover from disasters.