Children’s Hospitals: Developing Leadership in Nationwide Pediatric Disaster Preparedness

  • Published August 2, 2023

Are you an emergency/disaster professional in a children’s hospital?
Do you have colleagues at children’s hospitals?
Join or help share information about the DNC!

The Disaster Networking Collaborative (DNC) is a free initiative of the Pediatric Pandemic Network (PPN), a federally funded group of 10 children’s hospitals and partner organizations working to improve outcomes for all children in emergencies, disasters, and pandemics.

Children’s hospitals have an opportunity to join this collaborative and the 10 PPN hub hospitals to enhance their pediatric disaster preparedness efforts. The DNC was designed to help children’s hospitals identify and refine best practices while developing strategies to increase awareness and strengthen pediatric disaster planning across states and regions. By engaging in the collaborative, participants will expand their pediatric voice and influence in regional disaster planning.

The 10-month collaborative, launching in September, aims to enhance the infrastructure and influence of children’s hospitals while:

  • garnering children’s hospital leadership support for pediatric disaster preparedness
  • establishing consistent disaster roles and responsibilities
  • engaging with the emergency medicine landscape and communities

“We are always learning from others and figuring out what we can do better,” says Hilary Hewes, MD, Co-Principal Investigator of the EMSC Data Center and an emergency physician at the University of Utah. “I signed up our hospital knowing that we have great support, several full-time disaster/emergency management professionals at our hospitals, and already are involved in county/regional drills with pediatric representation in health care coalitions. I still want to work on building relationships with other children’s hospitals and connecting with regional centers. Through the DNC, I think we can become more engaged!”

Participant teams

Although an ideal DNC team will be multidisciplinary and include at least one individual responsible for emergency planning or disaster management duties, no prior disaster management experience is necessary for participants.

Time commitment

Participants can expect to spend 3 to 5 hours per month on collaborative activities (including the monthly learning sessions). Monthly learning sessions will provide educational information, quality improvement strategies, and consensus-driven approaches.

Register by Sept. 15 on the PPN website!