The American Academy of Disaster Medicine Marks National Preparedness Month

Aug 24, 2011

Tampa, FL — The American Academy of Disaster Medicine (AADM) strongly believes that knowledge of how to respond to disasters and how to coordinate that response with other agencies and organizations involved is essential for every physician.

September is the eighth National Preparedness month, and serves as a reminder to all physicians, that helping to prepare their communities for emergencies of all kinds is a vital professional responsibility. This year’s theme designated by FEMA, A Time to Remember, A Time to Prepare, recognizes the tenth anniversary of the September 11 attacks.

“When disaster strikes, survival requires the full range of medical specialties and knowledge,” said James Terbush, MD, MPH, and President of the American Academy of Disaster Medicine. “We can’t always predict disaster, but we can be better prepared for a crisis when it strikes.”

AADM was created to promote disaster health care preparedness and interdisciplinary cooperation. AADM functions to bring together disaster medicine community resources that efficiently and effectively focus collective action toward preserving life, reducing morbidity, human suffering and restoring health capacity in disaster zones.

AADM’s affiliated American Board of Disaster Medicine (ABODM) is the first medical board to offer certification in disaster medicine. As survival rates can be most dependent upon the response of physicians within all areas of expertise, ABODM believes that disaster medicine should be every physician’s second specialty.

“Disaster medicine plays a vital role in the disaster life cycle – preparation, planning, response and recovery,” Terbush said. “Physicians trained and certified in disaster medicine are needed to provide medical expertise and to work in tandem with other stakeholders to create public health policies that improve both the effectiveness and availability of medical care during epidemics, terrorist attacks and natural disasters.”

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