Guardian of Public Health - March 2016

Bureau of EMS, Trauma & Preparedness

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News and Articles

Emergency Alerts Get More Direct

In Emergency Management, authors discuss the evolving use of emergency alerting through mobile devices.  Today emergency alerts to be targeted to the users exact location and situation.

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Training & Events

Flint and Lead: The Water-Public Health Connection

March 16, 2016 - Live Webinar

The American Public Health Association and the American Water Works Association are hosting a webinar on the current state of science related to the health risks posed by lead and the value of engaging the water systems sector. 

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Zika Virus - Information for Clinicians

March 17, 2016 - Live Webinar and Satellite Broadcast

This program will provide a general overview of the Zika virus including transmission, vector, exposure history and affected countries. Program faculty will also provide important information for clinicians that provide care for pregnant women, infants and children. Read More>>

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Tools & Resources

Disaster Technical Assistance Center Supplemental Research Bulletin: Challenges and Considerations in Disaster Research

From the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSHA), this document addresses the ethical and operational concerns in research design, participant recruitment, data collection, and data interpretation during disaster research. 

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Michigan Prepares


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About the Guardian

The Guardian of Public Health is a monthly newsletter from the Bureau of EMS, Trauma, and Preparedness (BETP) within the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS). The Guardian aims to provide its readers with relevant content on topics that affect the public health of citizens and communities in Michigan. For questions or comments please contact Kerry Chamberlain at

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The Michigan Update

Tabletop Exercise with Behavioral Health Partners

Jon Stone - Region 8 Healthcare Coalition Coordinator

During a disaster how are behavioral and mental health agencies integrated into the community response? This question was at the genesis of a recent tabletop exercise involving several behavioral/mental health agency partners serving communities on the western end of the Upper Peninsula.  The exercise was part of a larger effort to provide disaster preparedness assistance to agencies and facilities that serve a vulnerable population of Michiganders. The goal of this effort is to help increase each agency’s capacity to provide continuous support for their clients during natural or man-made disasters.

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Public Health Laboratories’ Role in Chemical Exposure Events

Theresa Miller – Chemical Response Training Coordinator – Bureau of Laboratories

Since September 11, 2001, public health laboratories focused most of their preparedness efforts on the detection and identification of biological agents. However, in order to fulfill the public health laboratory’s all hazard capabilities, other emergency events such as chemical exposures require additional effort.

One of the key functions of public health departments is to coordinate collection of environmental and clinical samples for analysis by public health laboratories.  During a chemical exposure event, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Bureau of Laboratories (MDHHS BOL) role is to provide scientific expertise in clinical sample analyses protocols for most categories of hazardous chemicals. 

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Effectiveness of a Mobile Short-Message-Service–Based Disease Outbreak Alert System in Kenya

Researchers in Emerging Infectious Diseases study whether mobile phone technology can overcome disease reporting issues in Kenya. They tested the mSOS formatted text messaging system which allows healthcare facility workers and Ministry of Health managers to better communicate with each other and uses a Web-based portal to monitor disease notifications and response actions taken. The testing showed the mSOS vastly improved disease reporting over a six month testing period, however, it did not remedy the problem of underreporting of disease cases. 

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