Preparation at a Cost

The events on April 15, 2013, at the Boston Marathon live on in the memories of the victims and their families, as well as the medical personnel who had to treat the injured. But what can the healthcare field take away from the event? In a cash-strapped economy, facilities struggle to afford basic equipment; how then can they fund more in-depth training away from the office? And while victims can seek out psychological help to deal with the horror of what happened, hospital staffers often find themselves left out in the cold when it comes to counseling, mainly due to the cost, according to

Lessons Learned in the Moment

By the time hospital staff had heard of the bombings, the first patients began arriving. With little time to prepare for the influx of injured, many Boston area hospitals had to learn on the fly. Soon, extra healthcare workers were called into duty, with many already on location as they had anticipated the influx of patients, a testament to their dedication to their field.

Practicing to Make Perfect

While hospitals around the country consistently drill to meet the demands a disaster could have on their facility, the true learning experiences happen when real-world events take place. The main factor that cuts into the ability for healthcare facilities to prepare are that quite often the funds needed just aren't there to support the training. So, this keeps staff from practicing as much as possible.

Psychological Affects on Staff

One area in which many healthcare facilities lack deals with providing psychological counseling to their workers, who often times have to deal with the horror of such tragedies on their own or pay for psychological help out of pocket. Officials often find themselves rushing to provide support to those who suffer directly from disasters, but oftentimes, indirectly, exposure to the raw physical and emotional affects of disasters can have an effect mentally as well. Unfortunately, funds for treating these psychological effects are in short supply.

So, healthcare facilities will continue to deal with disaster preparedness using what available funds they do have. This mostly includes training on site to meet the needs of their patients, regardless of the situation and how bad it gets. There is always the hope that additional funding can be acquired, but in the long run, most facilities have to make do with what they have.

For more information about how healthcare facilities and how funding affects their disaster response, visit: