Perception and Core Competencies of Disaster Nursing in South Korea
OBJECTIVES This article details the development of the Center for Health Professional Training and Emergency Response (CHPTER), including its innovative, competency-based emergency preparedness training (EPT) curriculum, and the results of a regional preparedness workforce assessment. METHODS CHPTER was established in 2009 with the goal of enhancing regional health security and patient surge competency by offering patient care providers, including clinicians and volunteers, hands-on lessons that will protect and save lives during a disaster. A 1-day emergency preparedness training (EPT) course that includes a loud, chaotic clinical disaster scenario was developed. A two-part workforce assessment survey to further refine regional EPT needs was administered. RESULTS The 1-day EPT course enhanced patient care providers' knowledge, comfort level, and skills required to save lives during a disaster. Twenty-one emergency department directors and 400 patient care providers responded to the surveys. The majority of emergency department directors surveyed believe that one in five of their provider workforce would fail to properly perform their expected duties in a disaster. More than half of the patient care providers reported fewer than 2 hours of annual EPT training and 40% of employers required no annual training. The most significant barriers to widespread dissemination of EPT were financial constraints and time availability of providers. CONCLUSIONS Patient care providers in our region (North and South Carolina) are not prepared for a disaster. The CHPTER 1-day competency-based EPT curricula improved trainee knowledge, comfort level, and disaster care skills. CHPTER may serve as a model for other regions seeking to improve care provider EPT programs.