Staff from Walsall Manor Hospital’s Emergency Department and wider departments and services will be taking part in a planned emergency exercise with colleagues from West Midlands Police and West Midlands Ambulance Service next week.
The exercise has been organised to test Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust’s response to a Chemical, Biological, Radiation, Nuclear and Explosive (CBRNE) incident and a decontamination shelter will be set up outside the department.
The Trust, along with all NHS organisations, needs to plan for, and respond to, a wide range of incidents and emergencies that could affect health or patient care. This exercise has been organised through its Emergency Preparedness, Resilience and Response (EPRR) programme and is a vital way of testing the arrangements in place in the event of a major incident.
The exercise will take place between 10am and 12noon on Wednesday 30 March 2022.
Mark Hart, Walsall Healthcare’s Head of EPRR said: “We want to reassure the public that there is no need for them to be concerned if they spot the decontamination shelter, mock casualties or notice extra emergency service vehicles on site that morning.
“The exercise is to help our staff and our partners test their response, actions and efficiency in the face of a major incident and is an important part of our organisation’s planning for emergency scenarios. Healthcare services will not be affected at all – we have drafted in additional staff to cover the short period of the exercise – and we are being assisted in this instance by volunteers from the Casualty Union as well as paramedic students from the University of Wolverhampton, for which we are really grateful.
“While the Trust has worked through the COVID-19 major incident it remains vital that we support our staff to be prepared for all kinds of eventualities that could create a highly pressurised environment for them. This is a necessary and beneficial exercise that will also involve non-clinical services and help them put their arrangements to the test.
“We thank people for their understanding and support.”