Education event

Disaster Planning for California Hospitals
Voices of experience, lessons for the future

Register Now
September 24 – 26, 2018
Sacramento, CA


Unprecedented. Record-breaking. Historic. From hurricanes and wildfires to floods and mass shootings, the nation saw no shortage of disasters in 2017. But with every disaster we confront, more knowledge is gained and wisdom gathered. And we carry those experiences forward into the future, strengthening our planning and fortifying our readiness.

Join us for the largest statewide gathering of hospital emergency preparedness coordinators in California and learn how others’ experiences can help you prepare for what’s ahead.

Conference highlights include:

  • Lessons from the 2017 Atlantic hurricane season
  • Cyberattack — how one hospital survived a ransomware attack
  • Mass casualty incident planning and no-notice drills
  • 2017 California Wildfires: Rising From the Ashes (a pre-conference workshop)
  • Bridging the gap between the FBI and medical community
  • CMS emergency preparedness rule — proven practices for forging collaborations between emergency management and compliance
  • Preparing for and executing a hospital evacuation
  • Physical, emotional and psychological impact of crisis preparedness and response
  • Planning and developing disaster exercises — pitfalls and recommendations
  • 15 ‘til 50 mass casualty incident response program
  • Rural readiness and the importance of MOUs
  • Preparing for pediatric Black Swan events
  • 2018 Statewide Medical and Health Exercise
  • Best Practices Poster Showcase
  • Exhibit show featuring more than 50 vendors
  • Learning from your peers, experts and more!

Conference Meeting Locations

The conference and exhibit show will be held at the Sacramento Convention Center, located just across the street from the Hyatt Regency Sacramento, the host hotel. The pre-conference workshop on Monday, Sept. 24, will be held at the Hyatt Regency.

Pre-Conference Workshop

Monday, Sept. 24

9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
2017 California Wildfires: Rising From the Ashes

2017 brought California’s most devastating and destructive wildfire season on record. A staggering 9,133 wildfires ravaged 1.2 million acres, destroyed more than 10,000 structures and killed more than 40 people. Fiery infernos raged throughout the state, spawning five of the most calamitous fires in state history, and spurring the call for mandatory evacuations and deployment of numerous disaster response teams to provide critical emergency assistance.

Hear from fellow hospital and state agency representatives who will share their firsthand accounts of the fallout from the firestorms, the heroic response activities and the invaluable lessons learned.

Workshop Agenda

9:00 – 9:05 a.m. | Welcome

9:05 – 9:30 a.m.
October 2017 Northern California Firestorm Overview
Mike Mohler, Deputy Director, Communications, California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection
Wildfire season in California is getting longer and affecting more of the state than in years past. 2017 was particularly devastating, included five of the most calamitous fires in state history, and led to multiple mandatory evacuations. Get a big picture perspective of wildfire in our state and its impact on resources including disaster response teams.

9:30 – 10:45 a.m.
North San Francisco Bay Wildfires: Emergency Hospital Evacuations Robin Allen, Former Chief Nursing Executive, Sutter Santa Rosa Regional Hospital; Suzie Byrne, RN, MSN, Area Quality Leader, Kaiser Permanente, San Rafael; John Fannin, Support Services Administrator, Kaiser Permanente, Santa Rosa; Jeff Miller, Chief Engineer, Sutter, Santa Rosa Regional Hospital; and Joshua Weil, MD, Emergency Physician/APIC Hospital Operations, Kaiser Permanente, Santa Rosa
Kaiser Permanente and Sutter Health evacuated hospitals due to Bay Area wildfire threats in 2017 – hear how they utilized local and corporate resources in those efforts. Panelists from both health care systems will share details regarding hospital evacuation, event response, recovery, and full restoration of healthcare services to the community.

10:45 – 11:00 a.m. | Break

11:00 – Noon
Coming Together: Two Health Systems’ Integrated Response to the Firestorm
John Fannin, Support Services Administrator, Kaiser Permanente, Santa Rosa; Mark Shirley, Environmental Risk Consultant, Office of the General Counsel, Sutter Health; and Donald Stevens, Executive Director Regional Support Services and Chief Energy Officer, Kaiser Permanente, Northern California
Panelists from Kaiser Permanente and Sutter Health will share experiences from the 2017 wildfires, focusing on their integrated approach to hospital evacuation and service restoration. Details of resource mobilization efforts and organizational lessons learned in safety and security, utilities management, and patient clinical and support activities will be featured.

Noon – 1:00 p.m. | Lunch

1:00 – 2:00 p.m.
Fire & Water: Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital’s Response to the Thomas Fire and Montecito Mudslides
Susanna Shaw, Director, Environmental Safety & Security, Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital
​When rain follows fire, deadly mudslides can complicate treating trauma patients. Presenters will discuss their response to the Thomas Fire and Montecito mudslides, including how they addressed employee transportation during a two-week freeway closure, and share information on critical incident stress counseling for patients and community members.

2:00 – 3:15 p.m.
Recovery, Repopulation and the Way Forward
Representatives from OSHPD and CDPH Licensing & Certification

3:15 – 3:30 p.m. | Break

3:30 – 4:30 p.m.
How We Heal
Stephen J Buehler, MFT, EAP Consultant, Kaiser Permanente, Santa Rosa & San Rafael; Diane Dufford, Director, Total Health & Productivity Management, Sutter Health; Layla Farinpour, Manager, Therapeutic Services, Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital; Darcy Keep, Administrative Director, Psychiatric and Addiction Services, Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital; and Joshua Weil, MD, Emergency Physician/APIC Hospital Operations, Kaiser Permanente, Santa Rosa
The effects of traumatic experiences such as wildfire and subsequent hospital evacuations can be felt by staff long after the initial events. Hear how three different organizations supported employees through the healing process of addressing the wildfires and evacuation, and the types of services their Employee Assistance Programs were able to offer.

4:30 – 5:00 p.m. | Closing Remarks

Tuesday Agenda

Tuesday, Sept. 25

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

8:30 – 10:00 a.m. | Opening Keynote  Through the Eye of the Storm: Lessons from the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season
Brandon Bond, MS, NHDP-BC, CBCP, Administrative Director, Office of Emergency Management, Stanford Health Care
No running water, no electricity, few access roads available, combined with a large population living in poverty is what Brandon Bond and his team faced during their deployment to Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. The devastation following Hurricanes Irma and Maria was almost unprecedented and nearlyt a year later, evidence of the devastation remains. Listen as Brandon discusses what occurred to the Disaster Medical Assistance Team CA-6 deployed to Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands during the Hurricanes. Brandon will discuss patient movement, how to best assist a vulnerable population in a disaster, and how to maintain hospital operations during catastrophic events.

10:00 – 10:45 a.m. | Exhibit Show and Best Practices Poster Showcase

10:45 a.m. – Noon | General Session Cyberattack! Preparing for and Protecting Against Health Care Hacks
Craig Felty, Vice President, Patient Care Services, Hancock Health/Hancock Regional Hospital
At approximately 9:30 p.m. on Thursday, January 11, 2018, an attack on the information systems of Hancock Health was initiated by a sophisticated criminal group. The hackers demanded a ransom payment in Bitcoin in exchange for a decryption key — or else. Listen as Craig Felty recounts the events following the demand. He will share leadership’s reaction to the crisis, staffs’ role in ensuring continuity of patient care, and the FBI’s involvement in the resolution. Mr. Felty will provide critical information to help other hospitals avoid this potential catastrophe.

Noon – 1:20 p.m. | Hosted Lunch

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

Beyond the Survey: Creating Shareable Practices Through Compliance/Emergency Management Collaboration
Laura Byrne, Senior Compliance Practice Leader, Enterprise Regional Compliance-Care Delivery and Pharmacy Unit, Kaiser Permanente; Claudia Marroquin-Frometa, Emergency Management Consultant, Healthcare Continuity Management
This presentation will provide information on CMS’ emergency preparedness federal rule and emphasize best practices for forging collaborations between emergency management and compliance teams. Attendees will be presented with a CMS crosswalk tool created to assist in identifying gaps in compliance.

Exercises Gone Wrong: When the Exercise Becomes the Disaster 
Barbara Dodge, BA, ED, Hospital Preparedness Coordinator, University of Nebraska Medical Center
Organizations commit time and money into disaster exercises. Poor planning and the desire for realism can make us lose track of basic safety planning. Using community-wide and individual hospital exercises, we will discuss the outcomes of several poorly planned exercises, consider missing elements in the design, evaluation and after action phases of planning, and discuss what could have been done to ensure success.

Bridging the Gap Between the FBI and the Medical Community
Jessica Young, Management and Program Analyst, Department of Justice,
Federal Bureau of Investigation

The FBI’s Weapons of Mass Destruction Directorate Biological Countermeasures Unit co-leads the Joint Criminal-Epidemiological (Crim-Epi) Investigations Program. The key mission of this Hospital and Emergency Medical Response sub-program is to provide the bridge between hospital staff and medical first responders with law enforcement officers. Attendees will be able to apply what they learn through new POCs within the FBI if they suspect a terrorism incident, and training offered by the FBI.

The Risks of Readiness
Susan Cosio, MDiv, BCC, Chaplain, Sutter Medical Center, Sacramento
While we routinely support frontline staff and first responders after critical incidents, we may fail to address the physical, emotional and psychological toll of being in a state of preparation and hypervigilance. Learn how to recognize the symptoms and causes of staff distress and encourage staff resilience.

2:20 – 2:40 p.m. | Break, Exhibit Show and Poster Viewing

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

When a Health Care Facility Needs Help Evacuating
Jody Durden, Emergency Services Coordinator, Emergency Medical Services Authority; Kelly Coleman, EMT-P, BA, Region II Regional Disaster Medical Health Specialist and EMS Coordinator, Alameda County Emergency Medical Services Agency; John Lord, RN, BS-EMS, MICP, Associate Director and Region III Regional Disaster Medical Health Specialist, Sierra-Sacramento Valley Emergency Medical Services Agency; and Michael Noone, MEP, NRP, Region I Regional Disaster Medical Health Specialist and Senior Disaster Services Analyst, Los Angeles Emergency Medical Services Agency
This panel discussion highlights how the Public Health and Medical Response System assists health care facilities during a facility evacuation. A brief presentation will describe how resources are coordinated at the local, regional, state and federal levels in order to assist healthcare facilities. Panelists will use recent events such as California fires, mudslides and the Oroville Dam Spillway Evacuation incident to show how the system works.

The Pediatric Black Swan Event: What it is and How to Prepare 
Patricia Frost, M.S., R.N., PNP, Director, Emergency Medical Services, Contra Costa County
Black Swan Disaster events are characterized as no-notice, catastrophic events leading to health care system exhaustion. This presentation serves as an introduction to mass casualty, large scale and black swan events and how children fair through it all. Learn practical steps to improve preparedness, and how hospital networks and health plans play a key role in providing their own solutions through public and private partnerships.

Making the 2018 Statewide Medical and Health Exercise Work for You 
Mary Massey, BSN, MA, CHEP, PHN, Hospital Preparedness Coordinator,
California Hospital Association, Hospital Preparedness Program

Hospitals, coalition partners, government and non-governmental agencies will learn about the 2018 Statewide Medical and Health Exercise. The presentation shows how to respond to a mass casualty incident by demonstrating how to meet regional, local and individual facility needs. It also addresses how to meet accreditation, regulatory and grant requirements, including new CMS Emergency Preparedness Rule requirements. 

Rural Readiness: Preparing, Maintaining and Utilizing MOUs (and More!
Valerie Lakey, Director, Public Relations; Coordinator, Emergency Preparedness,
Mayers Memorial Hospital District

MOUs established in advance can help rural communities secure resources during emergencies. Speakers will discuss the types of MOU’s needed and how they are used, and highlight California’s Public Health and Medical Response System and the California Patient Movement Plan so you know who to call for help.

Emergency Management Fundamentals
Loni Howard, RN, MSN, Coordinator, Emergency Preparedness, Sutter Medical Center, Sacramento
Designed for those new to emergency preparedness, this session outlines the scope and fundamentals of an effective emergency management program. Learn ways to develop your Emergency Operations Plan and prepare for a Joint Commission or CMS survey. Some take home tools will be provided.

3:40 – 4:00 p.m. | Break, Exhibit Show and Poster Viewing

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

Responding as One: Incorporating Clinics into Your Network Command Center Through CMS Regulations
David Bernstein, Senior Consultant, BSI EHS Services and Solutions; and Calvin Fakkema, Manager, Safety and Security, Children’s Hospital of Orange County
Through the CMS exercise requirement for clinics, Children’s Hospital of Orange County has found a way to both better prepare clinics for emergencies, and integrate them into the Hospital Incident Command Structure. Participants will gain insight on meeting CMS requirements for clinics as well as lessons and strategies for effectively integrating outpatient facilities into their command structure.

15 ‘til 50 Mass Casualty Incident Response for Small Hospitals and Clinics
Chris Riccardi, CHSP, CHEP, CHCM-SEC, Founder and CEO, C. Riccardi Consulting & Training, LLC
Are you prepared for a large influx of patients due to natural or human induced disasters? Learn about the “15 ’til 50” Mass Casualty Incident (MCI) Response methodology, and how this scalable process has been adapted to small hospitals, clinics and Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) utilizing free resources.

Workplace Violence Training: One Health Care System’s Approach to the New Law
Karen Jones, Senior Director, Patient Care, Mercy Medical Center, Redding
Dignity Health has trained nearly 100% of its more than 55,000 employees across three states in full compliance with Cal/OSHA’s sweeping Health Care Workplace Violence Prevention regulation. Benefit from their experiences as speakers from large and small hospitals share lessons learned and tips for implementing successful training programs.

Preparing for Imminent Evacuation of a Rural Hospital During a Fire 
Peggy Manning, Chief Nursing Officer, Trinity Hospital
Fire on the frontier! Hear how one rural community hospital prepared for evacuation of its hospital, skilled nursing home residents, home health and high risk clinic patients during the 2017 Helena Fork Fire. Presenters will share insights regarding networking with community partners as well as lessons learned.

Incident Notification and Communication Protocols
Mitch Saruwatari, Director, Emergency Management, Kaiser Permanente
Understand how an incident typically evolves and the communication pathways needed to mobilize an appropriate response. This session will review protocols for incident identification, initial notification and event assessment, and use examples from the 2017 Wildfires to show how agencies can share, process, publish and distribute information.

5:00 – 6:00 p.m. | Exhibit Show Reception and Best Practices Poster 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, Sept. 26

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

8:30 – 10:00 a.m. | General Session — Updating Mass Casualty Incident Response Protocols: What Matters and How Can You Test It?
Paul Biddinger, MD, Chief, Division of Emergency Preparedness; Director, MGH Center for Disaster Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital; and Alison Parmar, Senior Administrative Manager, Disaster Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital 
An effective hospital’s response to a Mass Casualty Incident (MCI) requires mobilization of an enormous number of resources within minutes. We will describe the key elements of a data-informed MCI protocol, and present a system of no-notice drills in the Emergency Department that increases staff comfort with their initial response actions. Attendees will receive achievable recommendations to enhance a hospital’s ability to implement an immediate response to rapid mobilization requests.

10:00 – 10:45 a.m. | Break & Grand Prize Drawing

10:45 a.m. – Noon | Closing Session — How to Prepare for a Mass Casualty Shooting
Dave Macintyre, D.O., Sunrise Hospital, Las Vegas
“All the injuries that I saw were things that I’ve been trained to deal with. We just had so many of them — that’s the part that really was overwhelming.” At approximately 10:00 p.m., October 1, Dave Macintyre, a trauma surgeon, was paged about a mass casualty shooting that had just happened on the Strip. Because Sunrise Hospital was close to the mass shooting at the Route 91 Harvest Festival, they took on more patients than any other facility in Las Vegas, over 250+ patients. Hear Dr. Macintrye discuss what he and his team experienced as they treated people involved in the largest mass shooting in history.

    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. Poster displays will be showcased in the exhibit hall along with more than 50 sponsor/exhibitor booths. Hospital representatives should be available during exhibit and poster viewing sessions to discuss their best practices with attendees.

    Click here to submit your best practices poster entry form. Submissions must be received by July 20.



    Register by August 24 and save!

    Full conference plus pre-conference workshop (Monday, Tuesday AND Wednesday): Members* $710, Nonmembers** $910

    Full conference (Tuesday AND Wednesday):
    Members $570, Nonmembers $760

    One day only (Monday OR Tuesday):
    Members $310, Nonmembers $420

    Registrations received after August 24, add $100.

    *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 nonrefundable 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.

    Photo Release

    CHA will photograph this event. If you prefer not to be photographed, please email CHA at

    Special Accommodations

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

    Continuing Education

    Full attendance at the educational sessions is a prerequisite for receiving continuing education. Attendees must sign in at each session at the conference and include their professional license number, if required.

    Compliance — This education activity has been submitted to the Compliance Certification Board (CCB)® and is currently pending their review for approval of CCB CEUs.

    Health Care Executives — CHA is authorized to award 6 pre-conference hours and up to 8.25 conference hours of pre-approved ACHE Qualified Education Credit for this program toward advancement, or recertification, in the American College of Healthcare Executives. Participants in this program who wish to have the continuing education hours applied toward ACHE Qualified Education credit must self-report their participation. To self-report, participants must log into their MyACHE account and select ACHE Qualified Education Credit.

    Nursing — Provider approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, Provider CEP #11924, for 7.2 pre-conference contact hours and up to 9.9 conference contact hours.

    Risk Management — Application has been made to the American Society for Health Care Risk Management (ASHRM) to award continuing education toward the fullfillment of FASHRM (Fellow), DFASHRM (Distinguished Fellow), and CPHRM (Certified Professional in Healthcare Risk Management) renewal.


    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
    (888) 421-1442 (reservations)
    (916) 443-1234

    Discounted rooms are available at a rate of $195 nightly, single and double occupancy. To make a reservation, call (888) 421-1442 and mention the California Hospital Association or reserve a room online.

    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 2018 Disaster Planning for California Hospitals Conference.

    Gold Sponsors to Date:


    Silver Sponsors to Date:


    Exhibitors to Date:

    • 3M
    • BSI EHS Services and Solutions
    • Department of Veterans Affairs, Multi-Use Vehicle (MUV)
    • Everbridge
    • Guest Communications Corporation
    • ILC Dover
    • Image Sales
    • Kinemetrics
    • Ludlum Measurement Inc.
    • Meals for All
    • Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development (OSHPD)
    • PODS Enterprise, LLC
    • Practical Hospital Services
    • Quake Care/Emergency Ready
    • ReddiNet
    • RRS Patient Decontamination
    • Safe Glow Corporation
    • ServiceMaster Recovery Management (SRM)
    • SSCOR
    • United States Geological Survey
    • X2nSat

    Conference Committee


    Cheri Hummel, CHEP, Vice President, Emergency Management & Facilities, California Hospital Association

    Committee Members

    Tony Barker, MSHS, Area Emergency Manager, U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs, Office of Emergency Management

    Ryan Burgess, RN, MSN, Hospital Preparedness Coordinator, Hospital Association of Southern California, and Prehospital Care Coordinator Administrative Nurse II, UCLA Medical Center

    Maryann Codeglia, Director, Clinical Quality Improvement, San Ramon Regional Medical Center

    Susan M. Fitzgerald, MD, Emergency Management Physician Lead, Santa Rosa Medical Center

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

    Jeffery Hudson-Covolo, DNP, RN, Vice President, Patient Care Services & Chief Nurse Executive, Sierra View Medical Center

    Lois Husted, Emergency Preparedness Officer, Queen of the Valley Medical Center

    Monique Imroth, MEP, Director, Emergency Management, UC San Diego Health System

    Connie Lackey, RN, Director, Emergency Preparedness/Safety/Security, Providence Saint Joseph, Holy Cross and Tarzana Medical Centers

    Valerie Lakey, Director, Public Relations/PIO/Safety Disaster Co-Coordinator, Mayers Memorial Hospital District

    Claudia Marroquin-Frometa, Emergency Management Consultant, Healthcare Continuity Management, Kaiser Permanente

    Mary Massey, BSN, MA, CHEP, PHN, Hospital Preparedness Consultant, California Hospital Association

    Laurie Nash, Charge Nurse/ER, Highland Hospital

    Tracy Norwood, IP/OH Specialist, Banner Lassen Medical Center

    Mitch Saruwatari, Director, Emergency Management, Kaiser Permanente

    Mark Shirley, MS, CSP, CHMM, Environmental Risk Consultant, Sutter Health Risk Services

    Caryn Thornburg, LVN, BAIS, MS, Safety, Emergency Management & Sustainability Officer, Stanford Health Care – ValleyCare

    Ryan Tuchmayer, Manager, Disaster Preparedness/Response, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center

    Matthew Washburn, Disaster Coordinator & Safety Officer, Orchard Hospital