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Related Information

HAP Memo 15-03
Preparing for World Meeting of Families and Papal Visit Sept 21-27 (Feb 2015)

HAP Testimony
On Pennsylvania hospitals’ Ebola preparedness

Key Facts
On Ebola virus preparations in PA hospitals

PA Regional Task Forces Map
Map of PA emergency preparedness regions

Healthcare Coalition Preparedness Project
Overview of the HAP and DOH preparedness initiative

Comment Letter
On proposed rule on emergency preparedness conditions of participation

HAP Statement
Statement on Preventing Injuries and Deaths from Firearms

Regional Managers

North Central/Northwest Central
Tom Kerchinski Sr.

Northeast/East Central
Jason Tomashunas

Scott Sherry

Mark Ross

South Central/South Central Mountain
Jason Brown

Fred Peterson

DVHC Impact

As part of a major metropolitan area, southeastern Pennsylvania has developed a strong disaster preparedness infrastructure. Southeastern Pennsylvania hospitals and health care facilities have adopted a zone structure to support effective communication and mutual support in the event of a disaster. The region holds joint training exercises and has developed media protocols and other tools for use during emergencies. Learn more

CMS Conditions of Participation (CoP) Updated Standards for Emergency Preparedness

The Centers for Medicare & Medcaid Services (CMS) has issued new Emergency Preparedness rules that will mandate an emergency preparedness program built on a “comprehensive framework” of risk assessment; plans, policies, and procedures; baseline capabilities for continuity of operations during emergencies; training and exercises; and interaction with local emergency management organizations. Compliance with the new rule and provisions impacts all facilities, providers, and suppliers of Medicare and Medicaid services.

The new rule was published in the Federal Register September 16, 2016. It goes into effect November 15, 2016, and must be implemented November 15, 2017, by all providers and suppliers of Medicare and Medicaid services. The final CMS rule is available online.

Background:  CMS has been working on updated CoPs for Emergency Preparedness for more than seven years. This update reflects needs identified from the study about issues impacting health care system operations, as well as patient and staff safety from attacks of September 11, 2001, Hurricane Katrina, H1N1, Hurricane Sandy, Ebola, and numerous man-made and natural disasters that have occurred during recent years. The changes more closely align the CoPs with current Joint Commission Accreditation Standards for Hospitals, but apply to all providers and suppliers with specific requirements for 17 categories of providers and suppliers beyond hospitals to include transplant centers and organizations, critical access hospitals, long-term care facilities, ambulatory surgery centers, hospices, and home health agencies, to name a few. More information is available in the CMS release.

HAP and DOH Partner to Improve Emergency Response in Pennsylvania

HAP and the Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH) are partnering in a five-year initiative to support and enhance health care preparedness and response efforts across the state.   

As part of this initiative, HAP staff is available to assist all Pennsylvania health care facilities, whether HAP members or not, with:

  • Facility and regional all-hazards planning, training, and exercises 
  • Development of regional Hazard Vulnerability Assessments     
  • Enhancement of regional and cross-regional Mutual Aid Agreements     
  • Implementation of Knowledge Center—a statewide, web-based situational awareness and health care coordination program ·         
  • Providing staff support of health and medical personnel at the local, regional, or state level        
  • Participation in coalition (health and medical committee) meetings and support with regional planning and response coordination   

If you would like help with your disaster planning and coordination efforts, please contact HAP’s emergency preparedness regional manager for your region.  

Stay Informed of Emergency Preparedness News and Activities 

Sign up for the Keystone Health Preparedness Digest to stay informed of important emergency preparedness activities, including: recent news, upcoming regional events, training and educational opportunities, and emergency preparedness resources.

Regional Activity


Contact: Tom Kerchinski Sr. at (814) 594-3882

North Central Region

Health & Medical Committee Meetings

  • August 4, 2016 — Lycoming DPS, 542 County Farm Road, Montoursville, PA 17754 — 10 a.m.
    NCTF Access#: (877) 252-4049 PIN: 4660
  • August 23, 2016 — NC Regional MCI exercise. Interested facilities contact Tom Kerchinski   or Stan Hudson.


Contact: Jason Tomashunas at (570) 466-1356

East Central Task Force

ECTF H&M Full Meeting

  • August 18, 2016 — Frackville Ambulance Building — 10 a.m.
  • October 27, 2016 — Site TBD — 9:30 a.m.
  • December 15, 2016 — Frackville Ambulance Building — 10 a.m.

Northeast Task Force

NETF H&M Full Meeting

  • September 16, 2016 — Geisinger CMC — 10 a.m.
  • December 9, 2016 — Wayne Memorial Hospital — 10 a.m.


Contact: Scott Sherry at (814) 227-5448

2016 Northwest Health & Medical Subcommittee Meeting Dates:

  • September 14, 2016
  • November 9, 2016

All meetings begin at 1 p.m. Meeting locations are TBD.

2016 Northwest Emergency Response Group General Membership Meeting Dates:

  • September 13, 2016
  • December 13, 2016

All meetings begin at 1 p.m. Meeting locations are TBD.


Contact: Mark Ross at (610) 656-2497

No activities currently scheduled


Contact: Jason Brown at (717) 395-1599

No activities currently scheduled


Contact: Fred Peterson at (724) 272-0015

SW Health and Medical meetings occur on the first Tuesday of each month beginning at 9:30 a.m. Meetings are conducted via teleconference. Access #: (412) 244-3700 PIN: 5006#


Sign Up for:

Knowledge Center Healthcare Incident Management System
Web-based tool to aid emergency managers and health care facility leadership with management of emergency incidents

PA Health Alert Network (PA-HAN)
Provides health-related alerts from the PA Health Alert Network to registered recipients

PA Facilities Resource Emergency Database
Provides information about an emergency to providers in affected areas and enables providers to report information about available resources


State Emergency Registry of Volunteers in Pennsylvania
Hospital staff (of all disciplines) interested in volunteering during disasters should register with the Department of Health's SERVPA website

Health Facility Resources:

Medical Surge Management Series
DOH guidance for preparing for, responding to, and recovering from incidents that result in a surge in the demand for medical care beyond what the existing health care system can provide

FEMA Reimbursement for Acute Care Hospitals
Provides an overview of FEMA's reimbursement process for declared disaster-related expenses

HHS HPP Guidance for Health Care Systems
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) hospital preparedness program guidance


PA Prepared Learning Management System
Web-based education programs related to public health and emergency preparedness

Related News

April 25, 2017

Stroke Center Update Legislation Receives Senate Committee Vote

As noted by the Chair of the Senate Health and Human Services Committee, Senator Lisa Baker (R-Luzerne), May is Stroke Awareness Month, and today’s committee vote to update the stroke designation law is aptly timed. The committee unanimously voted House Bill 23 out of the Senate committee.

March 30, 2017

DOH, HAP Continue to Partner on Emergency Preparedness

The Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH) and HAP have finalized their partnership in support of the Emergency Preparedness Services component of DOH’s Healthcare Preparedness Program. 

November 04, 2016

Hospitals Fighting Violence on All Fronts, National Program Provides Support

Violence is considered a major public health and safety issue throughout the country. Hospitals and health systems are working to help address violence in communities and within hospital settings.

View all Emergency Preparedness News

Related Blogs

September 26, 2014

Be Prepared: The Boy Scout Motto Still Holds True!

Fellow health care colleagues and first responders, we all have experience in preparing for and responding to emergencies, from the impact of severe weather to the emergence of new diseases. We know what we need to do during these events; however, if a disaster happened today, would you―as a person, and not a health care professional or first responder—be ready?

February 14, 2014

Shelter from the Storm

How 300 seniors got warm again thanks to southeastern Pennsylvania’s spirit of cooperation and readiness for emergencies.

December 16, 2013

How would we fare if November’s tornadoes hit here?

Excellent forecasting and communication are credited with keeping loss of life and injuries to a minimum, but what if the tornadoes had hit here?

View All Emergency Preparedness Blogs


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