Quarterly read: Five Days at Memorial by Sheri Fink

Just finished Five Days at Memorial by Sheri Fink.

Overview at the bottom.

My top 5 takeaways.

  1. Hospitals need to plan more aggressively and not “believe” that all resources will be available to support in a crisis.
  2. Real exercises need to happen. Tabletops are not enough to test hospital gaps.
  3. Emergency Management needs to be involved early to objectively review and evaluate performance…esp as a third party evaluator.
  4. Reduction in system-wide variables will lead to less confusion. Actions taken outside protocol and/or made on emotion will likely be a bad decision.
  5. All patients/people are important.

Seems like all these items listed above are consistent with other organizations and agencies huh?

What are you reading this quarter?

@rusnivek

 

Overview

Five Days at Memorial: Life and Death in a Storm-Ravaged Hospital by Sheri Fink

Pulitzer Prize winner Sheri Fink’s landmark investigation of patient deaths at a New Orleans hospital ravaged by Hurricane Katrina – and her suspenseful portrayal of the quest for truth and justice.

In the tradition of the best investigative journalism, physician and reporter Sheri Fink reconstructs 5 days at Memorial Medical Center and draws the reader into the lives of those who struggled mightily to survive and maintain life amid chaos.

After Katrina struck and the floodwaters rose, the power failed, and the heat climbed, exhausted caregivers chose to designate certain patients last for rescue. Months later, several of those caregivers faced criminal allegations that they deliberately injected numerous patients with drugs to hasten their deaths.

Five Days at Memorial, the culmination of six years of reporting, unspools the mystery of what happened in those days, bringing the reader into a hospital fighting for its life and into a conversation about the most terrifying form of health care rationing.

In a voice at once involving and fair, masterful and intimate, Fink exposes the hidden dilemmas of end-of-life care and reveals just how ill-prepared we are for the impact of large-scale disasters—and how we can do better. A remarkable book, engrossing from start to finish, Five Days at Memorial radically transforms your understanding of human nature in crisis.

One of The New York Times‘ Best Ten Books of the Year

Demobilized from Hurricane Irma, now headed back out again

I just demobilized from Hurricane Irma. Total of 42 days.

One thought as I repack: I have never worked so hard and had to use ALL my learned PIO skills and tricks in just one disaster.

Few hours to make the turnaround in Cleveland.

Now headed to support another DHS mission with the US and Canada.


Evoking the famous quote from Ray Stantz: “Oh, I got to get some sleep, I’m dying.”

@rusnivek

I got a headache!!! In your preparedness kit, I need your… #NatlPrep

Before you hear “I got a headache!!!!!” – everyone should have planned to keep extra medications in their emergency preparedness kit. And I know, you got the case of the MUNDAYS – so for sure we might have a few headaches.So make sure your planning includes extra medications for everyone in your family.

Make a medications list and plan to maintain an extra 3-5 days of your meds in your emergency preparedness kit. #NatlPrep 

Never know when you might have to use some meds.

For more great preparedness tips, check out my friends at www.ready.gov

Be safe and PlanAhead!

@rusnivek

Turkey thawing temperatures and safe handling techniques #DFT2015

To help thaw my turkey, I just might try this method.

monica-turkey-head1

Maybe I should get some gloves so I don’t cross contaminate everything.

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But seriously, here’s a few tips to help keep your kitchen (and bathroom) clean as you are thawing your birds:

  • Wash your hands frequently.
  • Keep all dishes, plates, and kitchen utensils clean.
  • Use different platters for the raw and cooked turkey.
  • When thawing turkeys in the fridge, use a try or pan to catch the falling juices that may leak.

That sounds like a ton of stuff to remember.

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Turkeys are more difficult to cook than rabbit

But for those science nerds or mathletes out there, here’s a more pound based calculation for you:

  • To thaw a 4-12 pound turkey, it will take approximately 1-3 days.
  • To thaw a 12-16 pound turkey, it will take approximately 3-4 days.
  • To thaw a 16-20 pound turkey, it will take approximately 4-5 days.
  • To thaw a 20-24 pound turkey, it will take approximately 5-6 days.

Basically, if you have a frozen turkey, over 12 pounds, you are screwed.

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Get thawing! NOW!

@rusnivek

My first week with ello #SocialMedia #SMEM

As promised, here’s my quick initial review of ello.

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It’s only been a few days…so I figured since everyone isn’t on it, this might help show some of the difference between this new emerging social media platform compared to others.

Here’s a quick news package story from the founders of ello.co from Vermont.

Hot Social Network Ello Starts in Vermont

(Love the small town local news)

For those that think this is like Facebook? Nope. The company’s mantra of a simple ad-free platform is as plain jane as can be. Not much there. In fact,

Few initial notes I have on ello:

  • Comments are a bit weird as they are currently in a separate box which is unattached to the picture you upload.
  • The gigantic fat Noise button – I’m still unclear on what that is. I feel like it’s kinda like the “I’m Feeling Lucky” button on Google.
  • No search feature.
  • No geolocation feature
  • I think more people are talking about ello on FB, Twitter, Insta, Vine, Snapchat, etc….than people actually ON ello.
  • No hashtag or category use
  • Stop trying to force me to Say Ello…But I WILL say ello with a horrible British accent
  • No trending topics.
  • After I post an update (or Say Ello…) Why do I have to move my cursor over to the “Post–>” button?
  • No popular happenings.
  • Finding friends is hard. Not cool. They are my friends.
  • No app.
  • Feels awfully like Tumblr.
  • It’s difficult to find friends because I have to first find them individually on their own page and then follow them. I can not pick them up from a list.
  • Kinda google plus-ie eh?
  • ello email notifications are simply notifications. It does not include the comment or response. Cannot be used for “documentation”. No point in Email notifications if you don’t notify me of what the message is.
  • Description is about the same, but not as prominent as Twitter.
  • Website link is there. Hope that ello will add a “preview” of website there.
  • Location? Hometown? Where U AT?
  • Trending based topics is not searchable (at this time).
  • Not having some sort of “rules” for picture posting, the pictures that are posted are either really wide or vertical. Not much semblance in fitting into screen.
  • Links to sites do NOT preview. FB does that.
  • No info provided on the analytics of views aka shown by the eyeball. Maybe that will come after beta.
  • Archiving for security.
  • When is ello projected to be out of beta?
  • List of people or things that I could follow too? When I find others similar to me, I want to see what they follow. I am assuming that we have similar interests. Hoping a future column to be added later in ello.
  • Posted times are approximate. Public safety demands exacts so I hope they put a more accurate time of post rather than “~11h”
  • Filters are absent.
  • Multiple picture uploads are not happening. Maybe that’s too cluttered for their “clean” layout.
  • x5 invites only to a closed social media platform? C’mon-what is this?!? 2003?!?!!?
  • @WTF….I mean policies/information tab. Hilarious, but very techy.
  • Formatting of posts using ** or * is kinda programmerish. Tron aficionados will love it, but not everyone programs…so this type of lingo isn’t going to fly for very long.
  • In the “Say Ello…” box  (aka status box) I find it weird that they tell you to Say Ello….when you really are going to write a comment about something else.
  • Reposting isn’t as inviting as FB’s “Share” button – and not easy to find.
  • On ello, you do not have to use your real name. but in the WTF rules, ello has their rose colored glasses on and “The Don’t impersonate others. Be yourself, or a version of yourself. Please don’t pretend to be someone else.”
  • Mobile ello is way better than desktop ello.
  • DYK: ello.com is different than ello.co
  • Advise your SM followers to turn off autofill or muscle memory of “co” vs “com”
  • Funny fact: Someone created a Mark Zuckerberg profile on ello.com – and it wasn’t Zuck.
  • Circle profiler picture is neeto, but I think I like square.
  • The ello logo is kinda creepy w/ no eyes right?

Forgot your password? I tested their forgot password send. The emailed reminder is hilarious, but NSFW. This kind of email would (obv) not pass work computer filters.

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Testing browsers, I found a few interesting non-compliant issues.

  • Desktop CPU / Windows-7 / Internet Explorer: Picture upload and layout/formatting issues
  • Desktop CPU / Windows-7 / Chrome: Friends take up too much screen real-estate in widescreen format.
  • Desktop CPU / Windows-7 / Safari: Too wide – again with the wide screen look (Maybe I’m too used to the vertical FB?)
  • Desktop CPU / Windows-XP / IE: Picture uploading issues
  • Desktop / Apple / Safari: Spread out (widescreen awkward formatting)
  • iPhone-5 / Safari: MUCH better layouts
  • iPad-Air / Safari: Better screen formatting and (my guess) it looks like it was designed for tablet.
  • Blackberry browser….who am I kidding. I haven’t seen one in the wild for 2 years now.

Ello’s HQ sent an email last night touting their recent successes. Cool.

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I do enjoy the quick simple emails with picture.

But let’s be honest, most of the ello participants that are already on ello, were drawn to the line in the email last night…”

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The use of “thingy” has me worried…and of course excited. Thanks Matt.

Well, since this is in beta, I’m sure there will be more good things to come. But at this time, I am doubtful will hold (DWH).

Not even close to ready for use during disasters or emergencies.

Because of the low participation and beta, this platform is not useful for preparedness or response or recovery or intelligence.

Special thanks to @schnick for the invite.

Maybe more good stuff from ello.co on the horizon.

@rusnivek

 

Whether on furlough or holiday, this is a perfect time to…

Whether on a holiday (Columbus Day) or Federal mandatory furlough, today is a great day to make and update/check your Emergency Supply Kit.

iEmergency_Supply_Kit

What to include? What to keep? What to have?

Some items you want to include in your kit are:

  • Bottled water for you for 3 days.
  • Food for you for 3 days.
  • Two working flashlights.
  • A battery-powered AM/FM/NOAA Weather radio.
  • Toilet paper.
  • A whistle to notify/warn others.
  • First Aid Kit.
  • Duct tape.
  • Extra cell phone charger.

And I’d bet you have most of these items around your house ready to go.

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So gather your things and get ready…because I guarantee you these few things will help you during the next a disaster or emergency.

@rusnivek