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Code Gray - Severe Weather

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I.PURPOSE:
A.To outline the process for responding to severe weather warnings.

II.POLICY:
A.In the event that a severe weather warning is issued through the National Weather Service, Memorial Hospital of Sheridan County will activate a Code Gray Severe Weather Warning, alerting staff of a possible impending weather impact to the facility.  The provisions of this policy cover the threat of a tornado, high winds, flood and/or blizzard conditions which could impede on the daily operations of this facility.

B.Code Gray provisions will augment the hospitals Code Yellow-Emergency Management Plan, EPP 1150, which will be activated when the threat of a potential severe weather storm may impact the operations of the facility.  The decision to activate the Code Gray will be made by Administration (CEO and/or Nursing Service Director) during the regular work hours and by Emergency Department staff, in consultation with the Nursing Supervisor during the weekends or irregular work hours.

C.The EM Coordinator will review the Code Gray response, Severe Weather warning and provide a report to the Safety Committee.

III.DEFINITIONS:  
None  

IV.PROCEDURES:
A.When a notification of a potential external disaster is received by staff, Administration (CEO and/or Nursing Service Director) or the Nursing Supervisor will be immediately contacted so a determination can be made as to activating the Code Gray provisions.  If the determination is made to activate the code, the telephone operator or Emergency Department staff will announce overhead, Code Gray.  This announcement will be made three times.

B.The CEO (Chief Executive Officer) or designee will assume the Incident Commander role with the command center being the 3rd Floor Administrative Boardroom, ext. 5327.  If Administration is not present, the House Supervisor will be in charge.  The command center will be in the Supervisors Office, Room 120, ext. 1020.  All reports will be called to the command center.

C.The Incident Commander will assess the severity of the potential storm and determine the need to relocate patients into the interior corridors and away from all windows.  If a patient cannot be moved into the corridor due to connections to monitors, oxygen, etc., every effort will be made to position the patient bed away from the windows.  Windows will be covered with blankets to prevent flying glass.

D.If the severity of the storm warrants, an alternate plan will call for the transfer of patients to the basement areas during the duration of the storm.   

E.Once it is determined by the Incident Commander that it is safe to return the patients to their room, it will be announced overhead, Code Gray All Clear. This announcement will be made three times.

ATTACHMENTS:  
None

V.DEPARTMENTS & POLICIES AFFECTED:  
A.Policy #EPP 1150, Code Yellow, Emergency Management Plan
B.All Departments

VI.REFERENCES:  
A.JCAHO Standards  

VII.COMMITTEE APPROVAL IF APPLICABLE: 
A.Safety Committee, September 28, 2005

VIII.DISTRIBUTION:
A.All Departments