Education event

Disaster Planning for California Hospitals
Planning for today, tomorrow and beyond: Celebrating 10 years of hospital preparedness

Register now
September 28 – 30, 2015
Sacramento, CA


We’ve come a long way, baby! Our tenth anniversary is a time to celebrate the relationships we have fostered and recognize the lessons we have learned and the plans we have developed — and also continue to prepare for the future. With each new day, we learn about potential risks we might never have imagined. Whatever tomorrow brings, we must and will be ready.

Join us to celebrate and elevate your readiness — planning for today, tomorrow and beyond!

Conference highlights include:

  • A pre-conference workshop on emerging infectious disease and lessons learned from Ebola
  • Extreme weather, drought and earthquake
  • Palliative care model for expectant triage
  • When your EHR goes down
  • Oso mudslide
  • Financial oversight practices
  • Disaster nutrition plans
  • Managing dialysis patients during a disaster
  • 18 different breakout sessions
  • Best Practices Poster Showcase
  • Exhibit show featuring over 50 vendors
  • And more!

Conference Meeting Location: Sacramento Convention Center

The conference and the exhibit show will be held at the Sacramento Convention Center, located just across the street from the host hotel, the Hyatt Regency Sacramento. The pre-conference workshop on Monday, September 28 will be held at the Hyatt Regency.

Pre-Conference Workshop

Monday, September 28

10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. | Pre-Conference Workshop
Infectious Diseases: Preparing for the Next Outbreak, What We Learned from Ebola

The outbreak of Ebola virus disease has shifted the way hospitals plan and prepare for emerging infectious diseases. What did we learn, and how can we apply those lessons to the next infectious disease outbreak? Attendees will hear from a physician with the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha who will share a firsthand account of the procedures and protocols employed during the treatment of a confirmed Ebola patient. In addition, a panel of representatives from hospitals who treated patients suspected of having Ebola will review their experiences, including what went well, opportunities for improvement and practical guidance as hospitals plan for the next emerging disease. Other topics include an overview of emerging infectious diseases and a look at how government agencies work together to protect against and prevent emerging threats.

Join us and learn how you can improve your plans to better respond to emerging infectious diseases.

Pre-Conference Faculty:

  • Daniel W. Johnson, MD, Division Chief, Critical Care, Department of Anesthesiology, University of Nebraska Medical Center
  • James P. Watt, MD, MPH, Chief, Division of Communicable Disease Control, Center for Infectious Diseases, California Department of Public Health
  • Cheryl Starling, RN, Nurse Consultant and Project Manager, Center for Infectious Diseases, California Department of Public Health

Additional faculty to be announced.

Tuesday Agenda

Tuesday, September 29

7:30 – 8:30 a.m. | Registration, Continental Breakfast, Exhibits and Best Practices Showcase

8:30 – 10:15 a.m. | Opening Keynotes

Shifting Focus: A Look at California’s Earthquake Risk
David P. Schwartz, PhD, Earthquake Geologist, San Francisco Bay Area Earthquake Hazards Project, U.S. Geological Survey

Extreme Weather Conditions and Regional Perspectives (tentative)

10:15 – 11:00 a.m. | Exhibit Show and Best Practices Showcase

11:00 a.m. – Noon | General Session

Crisis Standards of Care
Umair A. Shah, MD, MPH, Executive Director, Harris County Public Health & Environmental Services

Noon – 1:00 p.m. | Hosted Lunch

1:20 – 2:20 p.m. | Concurrent Breakout Sessions
(choose one)

A Palliative Care Approach to Expectant Triage
Terry Stone, Safety Officer/Emergency Preparedness Manager; and Lisa Frost, DNP, ACNS-BC, RN, Palliative Care Program Manager, Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital
In a crisis, tough decisions have to be made to provide appropriate care for the greatest number of patients. This session will illustrate a palliative care approach to improve the provision of care for the body, mind and spirit of patients who may not survive. Participants will take home a toolkit on how to identify an appropriate triage location, equipment, supplies, procedures, competent staff and staff support for the expectant/palliative care triage area.

The ABCs of Business Continuity
Robert C. Vance, III, CPP, CHEP, Safety, Emergency Management & Business Continuity Officer, Keck Medical Center of USC
What if you knew in advance of an event that could disrupt the provision of quality care for your patients? In this presentation, the importance of Business Continuity (BC) planning and the ways in which BC differs from disaster preparedness will be explained. Components of an effective BC plan will be outlined as a means to achieve higher patient satisfaction scores and prepare participants to advocate for improved BC plans with health care executives.

Developing  An Interdisciplinary Team for Emerging Infectious Diseases
Kristine Taylor, Nurse Quality Manager, Stanford Children’s Health; Gabe Gammon, Logistics Coordinator – OEM, and Martha Berrier, Patient Care Manager, Stanford Health Care
Planning for emerging infectious diseases is becoming an essential component of a robust emergency management program. In the wake of the Ebola crisis, Stanford Health Care and Stanford Children’s Health hospitals’ two separate organizations created an interdisciplinary team, including leadership, physicians and nurses, to train and prepare staff in the event of such an emergency. Attendees will explore ways to involve diverse team members in the development of infectious disease protocols and in developing the appropriate environment for housing infectious patients.

Shots Fired — How to Maximize Film in Active Shooter Drills
Chau Vu, Director, Emergency Management, UCSF Medical Center/UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital; and Threse Barnes, RN, Administrative Nurse; and Elizabeth Clifton, MSN, RN, CNS, CEN, Clinical Nurse IV, Emergency Department, UCSF Medical Center
Active Shooter Drills are just that — active. This session focuses on the planning process and strategies for working with a videography professional to maximize the effectiveness of the active shooter drill as an operations-based exercise and in future discussion-based tabletop exercises. Presenters will provide background on the influences and challenges associated with working in partnership with myriad internal and external entities in a new facility, and ways to maximize Homeland Security Exercise & Evaluation Program (HSEEP) protocols. Participants will see how utilizing engaging, empowering and authentic discourse captured on film can enhance future drills, training and exercises.

2:40 – 3:40 p.m. | Concurrent Breakout Sessions
(choose one)

Evacuation and Relocation of a Locked Psychiatric Unit
Mary Kay Shibley, RN, MSN, Behavioral Health Clinical Informaticist & Clinical Coordinator, Sharp Mesa Vista Expansion & Improvement Project, Sharp HealthCare
Evacuation and relocation planning is never a simple process. Compounding this challenge with youth patients in a locked psychiatric unit increases the complexity and opportunity for learning. This session will outline the preparation, staff training, execution of an evacuation and return to normal operations at Sharp Mesa Vista Hospital Children’s and Adolescent Program building. Emergency protocols for staffing requirements, security, coordination of ancillary services such as food service, patient tracking and communication between stakeholders will be discussed.

Creating a Value Stream-Based Business Impact Analysis
Karl Matzke, Business Continuity Manager, Stanford Health Care
The complexity of hospital operations makes the creation of a Business Impact Analysis particularly daunting. This presentation will describe how to overcome challenges to create a useful, value stream-based analysis. Learn how to use network analysis tools to map dependencies in your hospital.

Oso Mudslide — Preparing for the Mass Casualty Incident
Michael DeCapua, Retired Fire Chief
Coordinated planning between first responders and medical facilities during a mass casualty incident will be the focus of this presentation, led by the HazMat Incident Safety Officer of the Oso Mudslide. Topics of discussion will include the use of incident command, patient tracking and accountability, planning templates and social media in successful activation and operations. Attendees will receive a mass casualty planning template to assist in future efforts to coordinate with first responders.

Using Past Incidents to Drive Future Planning: Introducing a New Incident Tracking Tool
Philip Lo, Emergency Management Consultant; and Kristina Spurgeon, Emergency Management Consultant, Kaiser Permanente
Tracking incidents, analyzing data and identifying trends can guide emergency management teams in evaluating response efforts and determining areas of improvement. In this session, Kaiser Permanente’s Incident Log tracking tool will be demonstrated, including ways it can be used to adjust Hazard Vulnerability Analysis (HVA) and planning assumptions, drive incident communication and assist with After Action Reporting. Presenters will share how this tool was developed, how it is used today and how it can be retroactively applied to past events to gain a better understanding of where to focus future efforts. Attendees will be provided with the incident tracking tool to take back to their facilities.

4:00 – 5:00 p.m. | Concurrent Breakout Sessions
(choose one)

Reducing the Surge of Non-Emergent Dialysis Patients After Disasters
Alexis Garcia, Director, DaVita Village Emergency Response Team (DaVERT); Tom Bradsell, Manager, DaVita Village Emergency Response Team (DaVERT); and Vince Hancock, Director, Communications, DaVita HealthCare Partners
When a disaster disrupts key utilities such as water and power, dialysis patients are among the most vulnerable special-needs patients. Previous disasters have revealed the need for increased collaboration between hospitals and dialysis providers to create contingency plans. Expert service providers will showcase innovative solutions used during recent events to successfully manage dialysis patients and reduce surge.  

The Road to Recovery: Demobilization and Recovery Planning
Mary Massey, Preparedness Program & Grant Manager, Orange County Health Care Agency
It’s over! Not quite. Demobilization and recovery planning are key steps in getting hospitals back on track and operating normally. This presentation will provide information, resources and tools to assist hospitals with developing demobilization and recovery plans to expedite the return to day-to-day functions. Key concepts to be discussed include the decision to demobilize, announcement of demobilization, transition to baseline operations, document preservation and how to utilize HICS in demobilization and recovery. 

Averting a Second Disaster: Leading Financial Oversight Practices Following Disasters
Bob Lastrico, CGFM, CHS IV, Subject Matter Expert/Consultant; and Jill E. Powell, Senior Manager, Ernst & Young, LLP
Careful financial oversight after a disaster — managing federal grants and protecting the hospital from a retroactive loss of funds several years post-closeout — is critical to business continuity. The presenter will provide an overview of the current state of federal disaster grants, including the financial oversight requirements applicable to disaster and mitigation programs of the Stafford Act and FEMA regulations (44 CFR), and other regulatory policies and procedures. Attendees will take away a checklist of activities to determine preparedness for the financial management requirements of federal disaster grants.

Update on The Joint Commission Emergency Management Standards
John D. Maurer, SASHE, CHFM, CHSP, Engineer, Department of Engineering, The Joint Commission (invited)
This session will review the latest changes to The Joint Commission’s standards for emergency management and leadership. Learn the top vulnerabilities surveyors are finding at hospitals and what you can do to meet accreditation standards.

5:00 – 6:00 p.m. | Exhibit Show Reception and Best Practices Showcase
Mingle with colleagues, enjoy hors d’oeuvres, and learn about useful products and services that can help you with disaster preparedness and response.

Wednesday Agenda

Wednesday, September 30

7:45 – 8:45 a.m. | Exhibit Show, Best Practices Showcase and Continental Breakfast

8:45 – 9:45 a.m. | General Session

Building Back Better After Superstorm Sandy
Marg Verbeek, MA (DEM), CEM, MEP, Director, Emergency Preparedness; and Kimberly Glassman, PhD, RN, NEA-BC, Senior Vice President, Patient Care Services/CNO, NYU Langone Medical Center
One of the most destructive hurricanes in U.S. history, Superstorm Sandy left a trail of unprecedented damage. Representatives from NYU Langone Medical Center will share their response to Sandy, and how recovery was taken to the next level by enhancing infrastructure protection, revitalizing the emergency management department, and developing and testing a new hurricane plan. Presenters will also review the patient tracking system that was implemented in New York state post-Sandy.

9:45 – 10:20 a.m. | Exhibit Show and Grand Prize Drawing

10:30 a.m. – Noon | Concurrent Breakout Sessions
(choose one)

From Anxiety to Action — A Glimpse Into Kaiser Permanente Northern California’s Ebola Super Trainer Program
Suzy Fitzgerald, MD, Emergency Physician/KPNC Regional Ebola Training Lead, Kaiser Permanente Northern California; Adam Landsdorf, MD, Emergency Physician, and Lisa Roberts, Kaiser Permanente
The 2014 outbreak of Ebola virus disease ignited the need for comprehensive education and tightened protocols for treating and managing patients with, or suspected of having, the disease. Critical to the response was developing personal protective equipment (PPE) training for providers on the front lines of care. This session will showcase how Kaiser Permanente Northern California created and refined their PPE training program to cultivate high-competency “super trainers” to deliver training to medical center response teams.

Building a Regulatory-Compliant Emergency Nutrition Plan
Jo Ann Leigh Miller, RD, MPH, Emergency Nutrition Consultant, Nutricopia; and a  representative from the University of California, Davis, Medical Center
Is your hospital prepared with adequate amounts of nutritious meals to nourish patients who depend on you during a disaster? Learn the latest in federal and state regulations, food service trends, best practices, and emergency meal and water storage options to bolster your facility’s emergency nutrition plan. Hear how hospitals can work with key partners to ensure plans will meet the needs of patients.

Operation Move: A Blueprint for the Safe Transport of Patients and Evacuation Planning
Michelle Cathcart, RN, Director, Pediatric Critical Care Services; Chau Vu, Director, Emergency Management; and Scott Soifer, MD, Executive Vice Chair of Clinical Affairs, UCSF Medical Center & UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital
Opening a new medical facility requires vast resources and extensive planning. The successful transport of patients from two facilities to a new one further complicates the process and can potentially put patients at risk. Attendees will learn how UCSF Medical Center and UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital planned and carried out the safe transport of 131 patients from throughout San Francisco to its new Mission Bay facility, without compromising patient care, and how lessons learned can be used for evacuation planning.

Noon – 1:15 p.m. | Hosted Lunch

1:30 – 3:00 p.m. | Concurrent Breakout Sessions
(choose one)

Anatomy of a Large Hospital Closure: Assessing Threats and Managing Impact
Patricia Frost, RN, MS, PNP, Contra Costa EMS Director & MHOAC, Contra Costa Health Services; Alvin Tang, MD, Assistant Chief, Emergency Medicine, East Bay, Kaiser Medical Center Richmond; and Fred Claridge, EMS Director, and Michelle Voos, Prehospital Care Coordinator, Alameda County EMS
A hospital closure can have a devastating and widespread effect on a community’s day-to-day emergency and critical care — particularly during a disaster. When Doctors Medical Center in San Pablo closed in April, patients from more than four counties lost a vital source of emergency care. Learn how to work with regional partners to mitigate the impact of a hospital closure and prepare nearby hospitals for surge.

Bug Out Isolation: Preparing for Emerging Pathogens
Christine Poblete, Program Support Assistant; Margaret Neff, MD, MS, Director of Medical Surgical Intensive Care Unit; and Kevin Storm, MSHS, Emergency Manager, VA Palo Alto Health Care System
Rapid response is essential to successfully managing the emergence of infectious diseases. Find out how VA Palo Alto Health Care System created an alternate care site to respond quickly to infectious disease patients with minimal impact on day-to-day hospital operations. Learn how to incorporate isolation capabilities and tailor environment-specific personal protective equipment to maximize resources for continual preparedness.

3:15 – 4:15 p.m. | Closing Session (TBD)

Best Practices Posters

The Best Practices Poster Showcase was conceived as a way for members to share innovative ideas and model programs that can be replicated by other hospitals. By recognizing and highlighting the excellent work and unique contributions of our members, we celebrate our successes and support our ability to learn from each other. Poster displays will be showcased in the exhibit hall.

Click here to complete and submit your entry form.

Deadline to Participate

All hospital staff are invited to submit entries. Multiple entries per hospital are welcome, however only 20 total entries will be selected to participate and limited slots are available. The deadline to submit entries is July 17.


Contact Lisa Hartzell at (916) 552-7502 or


Hospitals may use federal Hospital Preparedness Program (HPP) grant monies to help cover tuition and travel costs. Check with your HPP grant administrator (either the local health department or Emergency Medical Services agency) for details.


Full conference plus pre-conference workshop (Monday, Tuesday AND Wednesday): Members* $695, Nonmembers** $895

Full conference (Tuesday AND Wednesday): Members $545, Nonmembers $725

Pre-conference only (Monday): Members $265, Nonmembers $375

One day conference only (Tuesday OR Wednesday): Members $295, Nonmembers $405

Registrations received after August 26 are subject to an additional $100 tuition increase.

* Members are CHA member hospitals, CHA associate members and government agencies. ** Nonmembers are limited to non-hospital health care providers, clinics, post-acute facilities, and consultants, insurance companies, law firms and other entities that serve hospitals. Education programs and publications are a membership benefit and are not available to eligible non-member California hospitals.
Tuition includes continental breakfasts, lunches, education sessions, exhibit show and reception, and continuing education. Onsite registrations and any unpaid registrations as of the date of the meeting will be charged an additional 10% fee.


A confirmation will be emailed to all registrants.

Cancellation Policy

A $75 non-refundable processing fee will be retained for each cancellation. Cancellations must be made in writing seven or more days prior to the scheduled event and faxed to (916) 552-7506. No refunds will be given after these dates. Substitutions are encouraged. Cancellation and substitution notification may be emailed to In the unlikely event that the program is cancelled, refunds will be issued to paid registrants within 30 days.

Special Accommodations

If you require special accommodations pursuant to the American’s with Disabilities Act please call (916) 552-7637.

Continuing Education

CEs will be offered for Compliance, Health Care Executives, Nursing and Risk Management. Attendees must sign in at each session at the conference and include their professional license number, if required.


The Hyatt Regency Sacramento is the host hotel for the conference. Located in the heart of downtown Sacramento and directly across the street from the State Capitol, the Hyatt is close to numerous dining options, shopping and parks.

Hyatt Regency Sacramento
1209 L Street
Sacramento, CA 95814
(916) 443-1234
Reservations: (888) 421-1442

Discount sleeping room deadline is August 26.
Rooms are available at a discounted rate of $175, single or double occupancy. Don’t delay — availability is limited and rooms may sell out at this discounted rate. Make a reservation online or call (888) 421-1442 and mention the “CHA Disaster Planning Conference.”

Sponsor & Exhibit

Be front and center at the only disaster planning conference targeted to California hospitals. Showcase your products to hundreds of leading health care decision makers, including hospital preparedness coordinators, disaster planning teams, and key state and federal officials. With dedicated exhibit viewing time to network, you will not be disappointed!

Click here for more information or contact Lisa Hartzell at


We would like to thank our corporate sponsors and exhibitors for their support of the 2015 Disaster Planning for California Hospitals Conference.

Silver Sponsors:


Exhibitors to Date:

3M Company

American Technologies, Inc.


Brief Relief


Disaster Management Systems

DQE, Inc.

Emergent BioSolutions, Inc.

ETC Building & Design


Global Star




Ludlum Measurements

MAXAIR Systems By Bio-Medical Devices Intl

QuakeHOLD! Industrial / Ready America

Recovery Resolution Specialists


Response Technologies, Ltd.

SOS Survival Products


University of San Francisco

Western Shelter Systems


Conference Committee


Cheri Hummel, Vice President, Emergency Management and Facilities, California Hospital Association

Committee Members

Lisa Angell, Prehospital Care Coordinator, Pediatric Liaison Nurse & Staff Nurse IV, Watsonville Community Hospital

Tony Barker, MSHS, Area Emergency Manager, U.S. Department of Veterans, Office of Emergency Management, VHA VISN 21, FEMA Region IX

Brandon Bond, Administrative Director, Stanford Healthcare

Ryan Burgess, Hospital Preparedness Coordinator, Hospital Association of Southern California

Elena Ceja, Senior Emergency Management Consultant, Kaiser Permanente

Barb Ellis, Emergency Preparedness Coordinator, Oroville Hospital

Hernando Garzon, MD, Director, Emergency Management, The Permanente Medical Group

Michele Heckle, Emergency Management, Environmental Health and Safety, UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland

Loni Howard, RN, MSN, Emergency Preparedness Coordinator, Sutter Medical Center

Monique Imroth, MEP, Director, Emergency Preparedness & Response, UC San Diego Health System

Bob Kiuttu, Manager, EMS Communications and Emergency Preparedness, Enloe Medical Center

Connie Lackey, VSA Director, Emergency Preparedness/Safety/Security, Providence St. Joseph Tarzana Medical Center

Claudia Marroquin-Frometa, Disaster Preparedness Coordinator, Emergency Management, Centinela Hospital Medical Center, Prime Healthcare System

Shannon McDougall, Director, Emergency Preparedness, St. Jude Medical Center

Grady Murphy, Emergency Coordinator, UCLA Health System & David Geffen School of Medicine

Kathy Nacey, RN, MS, MICN, CEN, CPEN, EMS and Emergency Preparedness Coordinator, Methodist Hospital of Sacramento

Christopher Riccardi, CHSP, CHEP, CHCM-SEC, Emergency Management and Project Coordinator, Providence Little Company of Mary Medical Center Torrance

Janet Seebert, Disaster Preparedness Coordinator, Catalina Island Medical Center

Mark Shirley, Manager, Environment of Care, California Pacific Medical Center

Kristina Spurgeon, Emergency Management Consultant, Kaiser Permanente

Wendi Thomas, RN, CEN, Nursing Director/Emergency Services, Family Birthing Center, Administrative Supervisors and Disaster Planning, Petaluma Valley Hospital

Caryn Thornburg, LVN, BAIS, MS, Safety, Emergency Management and Sustainability Officer, ValleyCare Health System