Brick Township OEM and Ocean Medical Center Announce Full-Scale Disaster Drill

Contact:Donna Sellmann, Public Relations Manager

Brick Township OEM and Ocean Medical Center Announce Full-Scale Disaster Drill

"Operations Surf's Up"

The Brick Township Office of Emergency Management and Ocean Medical Center have announced that a full-scale emergency exercise will be held on Sunday, August 7, 2011 beginning at 8:00 a.m. at the medical center. The exercise scenario presents a major hurricane and power outage in Brick Township, leading the hospital to shelter-in-place and eventually evacuate.

The purpose of the "Operations Surf's Up" drill is to examine interactions between local and State resources during a disaster, with focus on coordination and collaboration of effectively evacuating patients from Ocean Medical Center. It will also test the local resources ability to request additional resources if such an event should occur.

Drills are common throughout the year, and this will be one of the largest ever conducted. The care and treatment of real patients at the medical center and those in the emergency department will continue as usual, without interruption of service while the drill is taking place.

Ocean Medical Center has partnered with the Brick Township Police Department and the Brick Township Office of Emergency Management to conduct the drill. Public service agencies throughout the community and state are also volunteering their time to participate in the exercise, which will involve individuals acting as patients. Exercises of this nature help first responders, medical professionals, and administrators better prepare for a true community emergency.

"This exercise is about identifying best practices and guidelines for an organized, systematic, and safe response to a situation that may require a partial or full evacuation of a hospital," said Ocean Medical Center President, Dean Q. Lin, MHA, MBA, FACHE. "Ocean's Incident Command Center will be activated to manage the response and evacuate the actor-patients from the medical center. We expect to learn many valuable lessons and identify best practices that can then be shared with other regional hospitals."

Participation and planning of the of the drill involved multiple additional agencies including: Brick Township Police EMS, Brick Township Bureau of Fire Safety, Breton Woods Fire Company, Herbertsville Fire Company, Laurelton Fire Company, Pioneer Hose Fire Company, Lakewood EMS, Lakewood Township Emergency Management, New Jersey EMS Task Force, Ocean County EMS Coordinator and the Ocean County Health Department. With the cooperation of the New Jersey and Ocean County Offices of Emergency Management numerous EMS squads from throughout the state will also be participating in the drill.

"Drills and exercises sharpen our skills at the all levels," said Brick Township Police Chief Nils R. Bergquist. "The lessons learned and the practice makes the department better prepared to handle all hazards. The department has long enjoyed a great relationship with the staff of Ocean Medical Center. The work that has gone into this drill has reinforced that relationship which results in an enhanced quality of service for all in our community."

"This drill is another example of the high level of commitment the Brick Township Police Department and the Ocean Medical Center have to protecting our community," said Mayor Stephen Acropolis. "They are constantly preparing for all types of emergency situations and citizens should take comfort knowing that they do."

For more information about the drill, contact Captain John Rein, Brick Township Police Department - Public Information Officer, at 732-262-2135.

Questions specific to Ocean Medical Center should be directed to Donna Sellmann, Public Relations Manager, at 732-840-3279.