Using an integrated, regional approach to public health and medical planning, ICF is helping the 21 jurisdictions of the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (MWCOG) build community resilience. We are assisting the public health professionals of the 21 MWCOG jurisdictions in reviewing existing jurisdictional plans and procedures. This process entails comparing the plans and procedures against current guidance and state and national standards—such as Project Public Health Ready, the Medical Surge Capacity and Capability handbook, the National Incident Management System, cooperative agreements, and grant guidance—and other plan development guidance, such as the National Response Framework and Comprehensive Preparedness Guide 101. We are also working with MWCOG jurisdictional planners to formulate action plans for addressing any gaps, process improvement, operational tool requirements, and new planning concepts.
In addition, ICF is working with MWCOG and its member jurisdictions to create multijurisdictional plans to address an array of topics critical to the public health arena, employing a systematic, regionalized approach that allows for participants’ input and ownership at all levels. This approach promotes interoperability of plans, equipment, personnel, teams, and other response assets. It also allows the 21 local jurisdictions to streamline their efforts and use regional information effectively, to plan more efficiently for managing public health and medical consequences of disasters at the local level. In this environment, the local jurisdiction planners apply lessons learned from throughout the region and actively share information among themselves to achieve common goals. Above all, the relationship building that occurs through this planning process will facilitate better communication during a response.
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