Improving global prehospital and emergency health care, public health, and disaster health and preparedness

Webinar Series

The February-July webinars are available for viewing below.

Presenter Presentation Topic Date and Time
Dr. Erin Smith Sixteen Years on: 9/11 Responders and their Families Share their Stories

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26 October
09:30 (AEDT)
Melbourne, Australia

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Professor David Heslop The CBRNE Prehospital Major Incident Environment 28 July
Sydney, Australia
Dr. Mayumi Kako Disaster Nursing History in Japan  29 June
Adelaide, Australia
Dr. Regina Rigatto Witt Legacy Planning for the 2014 Football World Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil  30 March
Porto Alegre, Brazil
Dr. Dónal O’Mathúna Disaster Research Ethics: Developing Evidence Ethically 1 March
Columbus, OH, USA
Elizabeth Norton A Toolkit for Disaster Preparedness & Response Information 23 February
Washington, DC, USA

Previous WADEM Webinars

Open and close the panels to view the previous webinar recordings.

CBRNE Prehospital Major Incident Environment - Prof. David Heslop

Webinar Date: 27 July 2017

Presentation Slides

Associate Professor David Heslop from the University of New South Wales presents: The CBRNE Prehospital Major Incident Environment - Recent Advances and Persistent Gaps Impacting Casualty Treatment, Medical Operations, and Decontamination Operations.

Disaster Nursing History in Japan - Mayumi Kako, PhD

Webinar Date: 27 July 2017

Japan has historically experienced numerous disasters as a result of being located on the “Pacific Rim of Fire.” Japan was also the target of a CBRNE disaster that happened in 1995, the Sarin Subway event.

The webinar will present the fast development of disaster health (with a particular focus on disaster nursing in Japan), summarize the contemporary history of disaster nursing in Japan, and provide an overview its organizational system, particularly in disaster situations.

Legacy Planning for the 2014 World Cup & 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil - Dr. Regina Rigatto Witt

Webinar Date: 30 March 2017

There is an emerging interest in the need to demonstrate a sustainable health legacy from mass gatherings investments. The World Cup and the Olympic Games were opportunities for the Brazilian government to develop a specific policy regarding Mass Gatherings. This seminar provides an overview of the process developed to identify, classify, and evaluate legacy of healthcare planning in the host city of Porto Alegre for the World Cup 2014.

The webinar discusses examples from the literature on how this development allowed the government to assess and evaluate the available resources to provide crucial support, and build capacity for future events, such as the 2016 Olympic Games.

Disaster Research Ethics: Developing Evidence Ethically - Dr. Dónal O’Mathúna

Webinar Date: 1 March 2017

Presentation Slides

Disaster responders need evidence to help guide their decisions as they plan for and implement responses. Disaster risk reduction requires evidence for policies and programs. The need for evidence creates an ethical imperative to conduct research on and in disasters. Some of that research involves human participants and raises another ethical imperative to protect participants.

This webinar provides an overview of some ethical challenges arising from balancing these dual imperatives in disaster research. Such issues have been highlighted by the inclusion of disaster research within the 2016 revision of the Council for International Organizations of Medical Sciences (CIOMS) ethics guidelines for biomedical research.

The webinar discusses examples from medical intervention research during the Ebola outbreak and with qualitative research in humanitarian crises. Disaster research also challenges current approaches to research ethics approval procedures and some modified approaches will be examined.

The webinar was being co-hosted by the Division of Bioethics, The Ohio State University College of Medicine and the Center for Disaster & Humanitarian Ethics.

A Toolkit for Disaster Preparedness & Response Information - Elizabeth Norton

Webinar Date: 23 February 2017

Presentation Slides

Authoritative information is critical in the preparation for and response to disasters and public health emergencies. Scattered across a myriad of sources, information can be difficult to find and even harder to evaluate for credibility and reliability. Using the Internet can take hours of searching to find elusive but critical documents. As the world’s largest aggregator of biomedical literature, the US National Library of Medicine (NLM) has a set of information tools, apps, and databases that can provide authoritative, evidence-based information critical prior to and during a disaster or public health emergency, making searching more effective and efficient.

Elizabeth Norton from NLM demonstrates the use of Disaster Lit®, an NLM database containing the often hard to find guidelines, white papers, trainings, and other important materials that are published in a wide range of places, and about a set of HAZMAT/CBRNE information tools that assist responders in the field. Participants will also learn about PubMed Central, a free full-text archive of biomedical and life sciences journal literature containing the best peer-review and most recently published research results. The webinar will also cover the Emergency Access Initiative (EAI), a collaboration between NLM and publishers to provide temporary free access to full-text articles to healthcare professionals and libraries affected by disasters.

Tragic Choices: Ethical Uncertainty in Humanitarian Healthcare - Dr. Matthew Hunt

Webinar Date: 26 January 2017

Presentation Slides

In the course of providing healthcare in situations of humanitarian crisis, health professionals face situations in which all available options are morally problematic in some way and, regardless of the decision made, something of moral significance will be given up. Such tragic choices have been described as an inescapable feature of humanitarian action. To illustrate the nature of these choices, Dr. Hunt discusss dilemmas related to the limits of professional competency and dilemmas of patient selection. He proposes avenues for humanitarian health professionals and humanitarian

Kiss Nightclub Fire in Santa Maria, Brazil - Dr. Silvana Dal Ponte

Webinar Date: 4 November 2016

On 27 January 2013, a fire at the Kiss Nightclub in Santa Maria, Brazil led to a mass-casualty incident affecting hundreds of college students. A total of 234 people died on scene, 145 were hospitalized, and another 623 people received treatment throughout the first week following the incident, eight of whom later died. The military police were the first on scene, followed by the state fire department, and then the municipal Mobile Prehospital Assistance (SAMU) ambulances. The number of victims was not communicated clearly to the various units arriving on scene, leading to insufficient rescue personnel and equipment. Incident command was established on scene, but the rescuers and police were still unable to control the chaos of multiple bystanders attempting to assist in the rescue efforts.

The Municipal Sports Center (CDM) was designated as the location for dead bodies, where victim identification and communication with families occurred, as well as forensic evaluation, which determined the primary cause of death to be asphyxia. A command center was established at the Hospital de Caridade Astrogildo de Azevedo (HCAA) in Santa Maria to direct where patients should be admitted, recruit staff, and procure additional supplies, as needed. The victims suffered primarily from smoke inhalation and many required endotracheal intubation and mechanical ventilation. There was a shortage of ventilators; therefore, some had to be borrowed from local hospitals, neighboring cities, and distant areas in the state. A total of 54 patients were transferred to hospitals in the capital city of Porto Alegre (Brazil).

The main issues with the response to the fire were scene control and communication. Areas for improvement were identified, namely the establishment of a disaster-response plan, as well as regularly scheduled training in disaster preparedness/response. These activities are the first steps to improving mass-casualty responses.

Impact of Mass Gatherings on Ambulance Services and Hospitals - Jamie Ranse

Webinar Date: 14 October 2016

During a mass gathering, some participants may receive health care for injuries or illnesses that occur during the event. In-event first responders provide initial assessment and management. However, when further definitive care is required, municipal ambulance services provide additional assessment, treatment, and transport of participants to acute care settings, such as hospitals.

The impact on both ambulance services and hospitals from mass-gathering events is the focus of this presentation. In particular, a case study of one outdoor music festival in 2012 in the Australian Capital Territory with approximately 20,000 participants will be analysed. This festival had one first aid post and a health team staffed by doctors, nurses, and paramedics.

Public Health Challenge of the Kumbla Mela 2013 Event - Dr. MP Cariappa

Webinar Date: 2 September 2016

Mass gathering events pose challenges to the most adept of public health practitioners in ensuring health safety of the population. These mass gatherings can be for sporting events, musical festivals, or more commonly have religious undertones in developing countries. The Kumbh Mela in Allahabad, India in 2013 may have been the largest gathering of humanity in the history of mankind with nearly 120 million pilgrims having thronged the venue.

The scale of the event posed a challenge to the maintenance of public health security and safety. A snapshot of the experience of managing the hygiene and sanitation aspect of this mega event is being presented in this webinar, highlighting the importance of proactive public health planning and preparedness. The evident flaw on post-event analyses is the failure to adequately cater for environmental mopping up operations on winding up.

TCCC, TEMS, HNT - Dr. William Bograkos

Webinar Date: 22 August 2016

Dr. Bograkos received his Disaster and CBRNE training during his 28 years of military service. Col. Bograkos has served both the US Army and Air Force as a military Flight Surgeon, Family Medicine, and Emergency Medicine physician. Operational experiences include: MP BN Surgeon, WMD SOD, & NATO PK Division Surgeon. He has served the Pentagon’s “Civil Military Emergency Preparedness” office as a Bioterrorism/ Medical Consultant (PfP Black Sea Initiative), briefed at the “First Interpol Global Conference on Preventing Bioterrorism” in Lyon, France (2005), and has instructed with DoD, DoJ, DHS, and NATO.

Colonel Bograkos graduated from the US Naval War College “with distinction” in 2009. He received his MA in National Security & Strategic Studies (AOS Irregular Warfare / narco-terrorism) with distinction in 2011. He is a Clinical Professor of Medical Military Science, Family Medicine, and Emergency Medicine at the University of New England, College of Osteopathic Medicine.

Advanced Nurse Practitioners Reducing Referrals to Local Care - Tony Kemp

Webinar Date: 5 August 2016

Tony is a nurse and an academic practicing within prehospital care, including regular attendance at mass gatherings within the United Kingdom. He is the Honorary Secretary of the British Association for Immediate Care (BASICS). Tony is a member of the Crowd Medical Team for Millwall FC and regularly teaches BASICS courses and the Crowd Doctors course for the Faculty of Prehospital Care at the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh.

Tony’s webinar reviews his research concerning the role of advanced nurse practitioners in admission avoidance at mass gatherings. Using a quantitative approach, Tony demonstrated a statistical benefit that was supported by an identifiable and meaningful outcome.

Public Health Planning for Mass Gatherings - Dr. Tina Endericks

Webinar Date: 1 July 2016

Dr. Endericks works at Public Health England and has years of experience with mass gathering events such as the London Olympics and European World Cups. She presents an overview of the updated public health for mass gathering - key considerations document, "lessons learned" from London 2012 Summer Games, and the work that is being done to support the planning for Rio 2016.

Crowd Psychology and Mass Gathering - Dr. John Drury

Webinar Date: 18 March 2016

Dr. Drury presents an introduction to the psychology of crowd behavior explaining how social identity principles have been used to explain mass emergency behavior. It describes recent research on mass gatherings (a music festival and the Hajj pilgrimage) using the social identity approach, showing how crowd self-regulation processes can complement formal crowd safety management practices.

For more information about Dr. John Drury, please visit -