Caring People, Touching Lives


EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS Colorado Health Care Association & Center for Assisted Living

Oxygen and Beauty Parlor Interpretive Guidelines


Workplace Violence In Long Term Care

Excellent short videos from British Columbia on long term care workplace violence.  Excellent for facilitating discussion for in-service training.

Forever Changed - Long Term Care.mp4

Forever Changed - Violence _ Aggression 2.mp4

Handouts for Emergency Management
& Safety Committee

If some files ask for a password just click OK three times and the window will exit and document will open.

HAN InfoService - Ebola Virus Disease - Weekly Summary - October 31 2014 .pdf


Flu and the Older Adult.pdf


Holiday Decorations in Long Term Care.docx


Lighting and Power Strips.docx




SOG Explosions (Gas).pdf 


Campus NaturalGasProcedures.pdf 

Senior Alert.docx

Updated CDPHE Emergency Operations Toolkits Now Available In Word, Thanks To CHCA


The complete CDPHE EOP Toolkits for long term care facilities are now available for easier updating and integration into your facility individual emergency operations plans.  This update includes a new list of area emergency managers by all hazards region.

Long Term Care Emergency Operations Toolkit (Word)



The Facility EOP Template

How To Write A Memorandum of Understanding

ICS Forms

ICS_ics forms.pdf

Hazard Analysis Tool

Hazard Planning Toolkit (Excel).xlsx


CMS Emergency Preparedness Checklist Recommended Tool for Effective Health Care Facility Planning (Revised December 2013).


This CMS recommended tool, originally developed in 2007 and updated in 2009, was revised in December 2013 and was accompanied by Survey & Certification Letter 14-12-ALL, issued February 28, 2014.


Training and Exercise Guide for Nursing Homes

The federal Department of Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP) provides specific standards for emergency preparedness training and exercises that complies with the National Incident Management System. To assist its many health and medical partners to become proficient in the HSEEP standards, the Florida's Department of Health Division of Emergency Operations developed a handbook called the Mechanic's Manual: a Handbook for Becoming HSEEP-Compliant.




The Emergency Preparedness Training and Exercise Guide for Nursing Homes assists health and medical partners such as nursing homes and hospitals, to become proficient in developing, conducting and evaluating preparedness exercises that meet the HSEEP standards.


Readers are strongly encouraged to visit the website of the Department of Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program ( for additional education about developing and conducting emergency preparedness exercises.



Colorado Assisted Living providers work on an incident command exercise in Pueblo in April.

Emergency Preparedness for Seniors

It's difficult enough to prepare for a winter storm, tornado or other disaster when you don't have the added challenge of a disability or lack of resources. During an emergency, as a senior or an individual with a disability, you may have special needs that must be considered when creating a household plan and emergency kit.

If you or a family member have difficulty moving quickly and easily, make sure your neighbors are aware and that you have someone who can check in during an emergency.

Develop a support network with several people who will continue to follow up with you following an emergency.

If in a multi-level dwelling, consider staying or relocating to the first floor.

Medication & Medical Supplies

Keep a separate supply of at least seven days worth of any medication or critical medical supplies, such as oxygen.

If you rely on electric medical equipment, such as wheelchairs, ventilators and oxygen compressors, talk to your medical supply company about getting batteries or a generator as a back up power source. Also contact your electricity provider and register with them.

Additions to the Emergency Kit and Go Bag:

  • Extra mobility aids, including a manual wheelchair (car batteries may be used to run an electric wheelchair)
  • A whistle to signal for help
  • Necessary medications and supplies
  • Special sanitary needs
  • Important medical phone numbers
  • Food that meets specialized dietary needs
  • Make a list of your medications, medical conditions, insurance information, allergies, and have your insurance cards available. Keep one copy with you at all times, and give the other copy to someone else for safekeeping.
Planning Tips for Seniors:
  • Develop a "buddy" system with family, fiends, neighbors, or co-workers. Plan how you will help each other in an emergency.
  • Prepare are an emergency go kit that you could grab and take with you if there is a need to evacuate. Include necessary medications, basic toiletries, any special sanitary aids, and whom to contact in emergencies.
  • Make a list of your medications, allergies, special equipment, doctor's number,. and whom to contact in emergencies. People who have difficulty with communication should have other important information written out, such as special toileting needs, or how to lift or move them. Give a copy to each buddy, keep a copy with you, and put a copy in your go kit (above).
  • Make a plan with your personal care attendant. If you use an attendant from an agency, see if the agency has special provisions for emergencies.
  • Determine at least two usable exits from each room and from your building.
  • Pick one out-of-state and one local friend or relative for family and others to call if separated. Identify a location where you can reunite with family/friends
Special Tips for Seniors During and After and Emergency
  • Keep important equipment and assistive devices in a consistent, convenient and secured place so you can quickly and easily locate them after the emergency happens.
  • Develop an emergency kit where extra hearing aids, batteries, eye glasses, etc., are kept, to replace damaged or lost equipment.
  • Store extra mobility aids (e.g., canes, crutches, walkers, wheelchairs), as a backup to primary equipment.
  • If you employ a personal attendant, use the services of a home health agency, or other type of in-home service, discuss with these people a plan for what you will do in case of an emergency.
  • A critical element to consider in emergency planning is the establishment of a personal support network or buddy system. This network can consist of friends, neighbors, family members, relatives, etc. Their job is to check with you in an emergency to ensure you are okay and help where needed.
  • Do not to depend on any one person, but work out support relationships with several people.
  • Evaluate your capabilities, limitations and needs, as well as your surroundings, to determine what type of help your personal support network may need to provide in an emergency.
  • Will you be able to independently shut off the necessary utilities (gas, water, electricity)?
  • Do you own and can you operate a fire extinguisher?
  • Do you have an evacuation kit that you can quickly grab and carry if you must leave your home? (Include necessary medications, toiletries, any special sanitary aids, and emergency contact information )

Write instructions for the following (keep a copy with you and share with your personal support network)

  • How to turn off utilities
  • How to operate and safely move any essential equipment you have
  • How to safely transport you if you need to be carried
  • How to provide personal assistance services
  • How you will evacuate, and where you will go

Additional Information:
Disability Preparedness for Seniors
Preparing for Older Americans


CMS Proposes National Requirement
for Emergency Readiness

The Obama administration is proposing federal requirements for Medicare and Medicaid providers to come up with standardized emergency plans.

Download and review the proposed requirements here.


In a notice of proposed rulemaking published late Friday, the Centers for Medicare Medicaid Services (CMS) says it wants providers to “ensure that they adequately plan for both natural and man-made disasters and coordinate with federal, state, tribal, regional, and local emergency preparedness systems. The proposed rules “would also ensure that these providers and suppliers are adequately prepared to meet the needs of patients, residents, clients, and participants during disaster and emergency situations" The elderly suffer the worst during disasters, data have shown, and nursing homes from California to New York can offer grim testimony on how the stress of evacuations alone can be fatal to their residents. In Louisiana, about 71 percent of those who died following Hurricane Katrina were 60 years or older; about half of those who died after Hurricane Sandy struck New York were 65 or older. After Sandy did her worst in New York, groups such as the Gerontological Society of America called for a more forward-thinking approach to saving seniors from disasters.“We don’t have continuity in the disaster infrastructure for older adults,” society member and University of South Florida Professor Lisa Brown said at the time. “Our efforts tend to be more reactive post-disaster than proactive pre-disaster.” Despite the consensus around the need for comprehensive disaster planning and training for the elderly, there may yet be concerns about the specifics in CMS’ proposal. The long term care profession is already subject to a Borgesian library’s worth of regulations undefined more rules even than nuclear power plants. CMS says it’s considering “preparedness requirements that 17 provider and supplier types must meet to participate in Medicare and Medicaid programs.” The proposed rules would tweak existing rules, CMS says, without elaborating further. “Despite these variations, our proposed regulations would provider generally consistent emergency preparedness requirements, enhance patient safety during emergencies for persons served by Medicare- and Medicaid-participating facilities, and establish a more coordinated and defined response to natural and man-made disasters,” CMS says in its rulemaking notice. Long term care advocates are reviewing CMS’ proposed rules and will be “developing comments” of its own, says Lyn Bentley, senior director of the American Health Care Association’s regulatory services. Comments on CMS’ proposed rules are due by Feb. 25.


OSHA Fines New Jersey NH $50,000.00

OSHA has cited a New Jersey Nursing Home nearly $50,000 for workplace safety violations that include excessive heat in the laundry, failing to ensure workers wore appropriate eye protection; failing to ensure easy access to a sharps container; failing to correct exposed wires from an industrial washer; failing to provide suitable eyewash facilities, lack of complete bloodborne pathogen training, lack of Hepatitis B vaccines, lack of effective information and training on hazardous chemicals in the workplace; improperly using flexible electrical (extension) cords, improperly labeled hazardous chemical containers; failure to develop a written hazard communication program; and failure to have material safety data sheets and safety data sheets for each hazardous chemical used in the workplace.

This again serves as a reminder that OSHA is aggressively pursuing long term care facilities, and the need to make certain that your safety program is complete throughout.                                                                                   

CoHCA Issues Press Release On OIG Report  4-18-2012
Colorado Ahead of the Curve In Emergency Preparedness for Nursing Homes


The recent Denver Post reporting of the HHS Office of the Inspector General (OIG), Gaps Continue to Exist in Nursing Home Emergency Preparedness and Response During Disasters: 2007-2010 Report (OEI-06-09-00270), emphasizes the importance of all health care facilities to be prepared for any and all emergencies and disasters. 

“Colorado is well ahead of the emergency preparedness curve to adequately care for the frail elderly and disabled we serve,” said David Skipper, Vice President Emergency Management, for the Colorado Health Care Association and Center for Assisted Living. Skipper has more than 35 years of experience in crisis management, nuclear, biological and chemical domestic preparedness, incident command and clinical implications of weapons of mass destruction.

Extensive and ongoing education and practical capability training in emergency preparedness and response is being provided to nursing homes and assisted living residences in Colorado through a partnership between Colorado Health Care Association (CoHCA) and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE).   CoHCA is facilitating the grant from Department of Health and Human Services to provide National Incident Management Systems (NIMS) training to every nursing home in Colorado, provide 4 statewide emergency preparedness and management courses to all assisted living communities in Colorado and revise the CDPHE Emergency Operations Plan (EOP) toolkits for nursing homes and assisted living facilities to be more user-friendly to long term care providers.

“It is important that our frail elders and disabled are not last on the priority list for evacuation, as happened with Katrina”.  Skipper said. 


CoHCA in partnership with the Center for Integrated Disaster Preparedness (CIDP) at the University of Colorado School of Medicine serves Colorado Healthcare providers through offering free trainings across the state. These trainings focus on creating comprehensive and integrated healthcare response systems and include ICS for Healthcare, Hazard Vulnerablity and resource sharing as well as specific trainings which work to build capability in the healthcare partner communities including Nursing Homes, Home Healthcare and Health clinics.   The director, Dr. Kreisberg, and the Medical Director Dr. Little have extensive experience building collaborative systems for the delivery of healthcare in a disaster.

“Colorado continues to sit on the fray of disaster planning through a system of carefully crafted deliverables, and integrated planning and response trainings and exercises” says Dr. Kreisberg.

The Center will offer a two-day symposium to invited public policy makers and emergency mamangement administrators to enter into a dialogue address the furture direction of Emergency Management in Colorado “Navigating Complex Change: Creating Continuity in Health Care Emergency Response and Recovery” June 6-7, 2012.

Nursing homes in Colorado are regularly performing full evacuation drills with community partners, identifying successes, challenges and documenting the results through each subsequent exercise and debriefing.  


Facilities should review CMS’ Emergency Preparedness checklist and use it to cross-check facility disaster preparedness plans and training with their community.


CHCA continues to work with CDPHE and other coalitions on emergency planning and preparedness issues to insure the safety and well-being of Colorado nursing home residents, staff and families.  









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