Education event

Disaster Planning for California Hospitals
The New Norm: Adjusting our Strategies

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September 10 – 11, 2019
Pasadena, CA

Thank you!

We appreciate the support you gave in making this conference a success. Thank you for the memories!

Tuesday Agenda

Tuesday, Sept. 10

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

8:30 – 10:00 a.m. | Opening Session — The Role of the CEO During and After Disaster Strikes — Panel Discussion (Livestream)
Steve Stark, MHA, MSOP, ACHE, CEO, Orchard Hospital; Jenifer Nyhuis, CEO, Signature Healthcare, Vista del Mar Hospital; Susan Stone, Senior Vice President and CEO, Sharp Coronado Hospital; Mike Wiltermood, President and CEO, Enloe Medical Center; and Steve Fellows, Executive Vice President & COO, Cottage Health
The role of an executive leadership may differ according to the hospital – their responsibility, however, remains the same. They must keep the hospital solvent, patients safe, and staff secure. Listen to different executives discuss the disaster that struck their community, the impact on their hospital and staff, and the role they played in response. Through their stories you’ll learn what it’s like to stand in the shoes of leadership, from day-of impact to community despair to reconstruction.

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

10:45 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. | Keynote Session — Health Care Resiliency (Livestream)
Robin Guenther, Principal, Perkins+Will and Senior Advisor, Health Care Without Harm
Communities often turn to their hospitals during times of crisis, seeking treatment or refuge in the security and safety those hospitals represent. Losing one can shake a community to its core.  With natural disasters and climate change events occurring more frequently, hospitals must become more resilient and prepared for all incidents including flooding, power outages and wildfires. Utilizing “The Toolkit” authored by Ms. Guenther, along with case studies, the session will help attendees understand a hospital’s climate risks and what needs to be done to protect health care facilities and systems during extreme weather events ― ensuring the facility will be there for the community it serves.

12:00 – 1:00 p.m. | Hosted Lunch
California Emergency Medical Services Authority & California Department of Public Health Updates 

1:15 – 2:15 p.m. | Concurrent Breakout Sessions (choose one)

Building Hospital and Community Resilience in the Face of Climate Change
Robyn Rothman, JD, Climate and Health Policy Manager, Health Care Without Harm (moderator) Seth Baruch, National Director for Energy and Utilities, Kaiser Permanente; Dr. Marc Futernick, Emergency Physician, Dignity Health California Hospital Medical Center, Regional Director for VEP Healthcare; and Kurt Kainsinger, Director of Office of Emergency Preparedness, UCLA Health System
What is health care’s role in protecting patients and providing care when it is needed most?  How can hospitals become more resilient, and help their communities become better prepared to withstand a changing climate? Learn how several health systems have taken action, both inside and outside of their facilities, to build climate resilience. They will share their experiences preparing for and providing care during the recent wildfires and heat waves, and highlight best practices for creating climate-resilient hospitals as anchors for resilient communities.

Integrating Access and Functional Needs Into Hospital Emergency Planning: Updates and Implementation With the Community
Kevin Muszynski, Manager, Support Services, and Steven Storbakken, Director Emergency Preparedness, Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center
FEMA has indicated up to 40 percent of the U.S. population has one or more specific “access and functional needs” and these needs may increase significantly during a disaster. This presentation will focus on one hospital’s experiences in working with local AFN agencies and organizations, and in conducting disaster exercises that included an AFN component.  Speakers will provide an updated AFN risk assessment form, allowing a hospital to identify the relative level of risk to each AFN community it serves, and its degree of preparedness in meeting AFN communities’ needs.

California Pediatric Surge Plan and Toolkit: Right Patient, Right Transportation, Right Destination
Richard Johnson, Health Officer, Health and Human Services, Alpine County
A catastrophic event will certainly cause a surge of ill or injured pediatric, neonatal, and OB patients whose needs far exceed the day-to-day capability and capacity of our health care system. A response will be required at all levels, from the PICU, NICU, critical access hospitals, EMS, and outpatient providers, both public and private, throughout the state and western region. This plan and toolkit will enable hospitals along with other health care coalition members to effectively and efficiently utilize limited resources to reduce morbidity and mortality involving children following a catastrophic event.

Earthquake Early Warning System for the Western States (Livestream)
Margaret Vinci, Manager, Regional Coordinator, ShakeAlert, Caltech; Ryan Tuchmayer, Associate Director, Emergency Management, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Robert de Groot, Ph.D., Coordinator, ShakeAlert Earthquake Early Warning System
Earthquakes are a national problem with more than 35 million people in California being exposed to potentially damaging shaking. ShakeAlert is an early warning from a network system of sensors that detects significant earthquake so quickly that alerts can reach many people seconds to several tens of seconds before shaking arrives. This earthquake alert system allows users and automatic systems to take actions to protect themselves, equipment, and delicate operations from injury or damage during shaking. Learn how ShakeAlert functions and hear how Cedars-Sinai participated as a pilot test site to implement the earthquake early warning system in their hospital.

2:15 – 3:00 p.m. | Break, Exhibit Show and Poster Viewing

3:00 – 4:00 p.m. | General Session — Feather River Hospital Panel – Beyond Accreditation: When it’s a Matter of Life and Death (Livestream)
Beth Neilson, Regional EM Director; Gary Miller, Emergency Preparedness Program Manager; Dean Strait, Outreach Director; and Tim Williams, Administrative Director, Physician & Outpatient Services; Adventist Health

Not only did Feather River Hospital staff survive the Camp Fire in Butte County, but many were also part of the hospital’s evacuation process and had to act as firefighters during that fateful morning of Nov. 8, 2018. Listen as a panel provides their perspective of what happened as eyewitnesses to a fire that destroyed a whole community. They will discuss the actual evacuation, the fire’s progression on their campus, what the responders did, and what they now know in hindsight. Their lessons learned will help hospitals and health care coalition be better prepared for this type of devastating event.

4:00 – 5:00 p.m. | General Session

Superman has Left the Building: Ethics and 21st Century Health Threats (Livestream)
Dan Hanfling, MD, Vice President, Technical Staff, In-Q-Tel​

Catastrophic disaster. Indecision, paralysis and avoidance can surface when forced to make life or death decisions. What happens when the demand for health and medical services far outweighs available resources and supplies? How should practitioners balance the ethical considerations involved in disaster response? Dan Hanfling, MD will explore the relationship that exists between provider and patient, including how that bond might change when under duress or danger. He will highlight core ethical principles used to govern patient care decisions, and will explore the distinction between individual and population based outcomes. He will discuss the role of community engagement and how it can be used to help articulate core values deemed of importance in the setting of a scarce resource decision making event.

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. 11

7:00 – 7:45 a.m. | Registration, Continental Breakfast, Exhibit Show and Best Practices Poster Showcase

7:45 – 8:30 a.m. | Special Event — Tribute to 9/11 ― 18 Years Later​ (Livestream)
Glen Klein, New York City Detective (Ret.), NYPD Emergency Services Unit (Ret.), New York City Paramedic (Ret.)
On the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, Glen Klein, an officer with the New York Police Department’s elite Emergency Service Unit, found himself at a command post just down the street from the World Trade Center, engulfed in dust from the collapse of the South Tower. Hundreds of firefighters and police officers remained in the burning North Tower as responders on the ground struggled to reach them with urgent warnings to evacuate. Listen as Glen recalls how his units rushed into the burning World Trade Center towers and worked for over 800 hours trying to recover fellow officers and other victims lost on that terrible day.

8:30 – 9:30 a.m. | General Session — The Future of HPP: Program Updates and a Look Ahead (Livestream)
Jack Herrmann, MSEd, NCC, LMHC, Director, Division of External Stakeholder Engagement, Office of External Affairs, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response
The Hospital Preparedness Program (HPP) is a cooperative agreement that prepares the health care system to save lives during emergencies through the development of regional health care coalitions (HCC). HCCs are groups of health care and response organizations that collaborate to prepare for, and respond to, medical surge events. Ms. Harvey will discuss the future of the program, including six key changes to the HPP Funding Opportunity Announcement, as well as the critical role that hospitals serve as members of HCCs across the nation.

9:30 – 10:15 a.m. | Break & Grand Prize Drawing

10:15 – 11:15 a.m. | Concurrent Breakout Sessions (choose one)

Dual-Disaster Ready: Supporting MOBs at Woodland Hills Medical Center (Livestream)
Jennie Gregg, Emergency Management Officer; Garo Balkian, MD, Assistant Area Medical Director; Alexander Rakul, MHA, PhD, Assistant Medical Group Administrator; Kelly Dickey, RN, Department Administrator, Family Medicine; and Michael Tutko, Director, Security Operations & Emergency Management, Kaiser Permanente Woodland Hills Medical Center
The Kaiser Permanente Woodland Hills Medical Center (WHMC) hospital and medical office building service area faced both a community active shooter and a catastrophic wildfire within 14 hours of each other, and one year after a prior catastrophic wildfire in the same area. By focusing on people and community support, the KP WHMC team explain why they are “Dual-Disaster Ready,” including peer-recognized best practice lessons learned, leading while evacuated, and first-hand perspectives on resiliency.

Fire & Ice: Lessons Learned from a Northern Rural Hospital During Disasters
Kenneth Luke, Disaster Coordinator, and Crystal Walsh, Trauma Manager, Mercy Medical Center Redding
This presentation will discuss some of the challenges one Northern California hospital faced during two polar opposite disasters ― wildfire and a record breaking snow storm. By “thinking outside the box” and using lessons learned from the previous paradoxical event, this hospital was able to overcome challenges and conflicts. These included: transfer of critically ill patients, communication barriers from county partners during a fast-moving event, resource requesting and tracking of resources, sheltering of vulnerable populations from the community, and a critical staffing shortage.

Partners in Preparedness – Integrating Business Continuity and Emergency Readiness
Chris Riccardi, Manager, Business Continuity, and Calvin Fakkema, CHSP, CHE, Manager, EM, Safety & Security, Children’s Hospital of Orange County
The Partners in Preparedness presentation is designed to demonstrate how two departments must work together for a facility’s overall preparedness. While the Emergency Operations Plan includes mitigation, planning and response protocol, Business Continuity focuses on the recovery aspect. By planning together, strategies can be implemented during the planning and response process to alleviate gaps in getting back to business as usual with a minimal impact on our community, patients, staff and the organization.

Run or Protect: Lessons Learned from Shooting Events in the Hospital Setting
Ann Griffin, Clinical Investigator, Department of Veterans Affairs; and Susan Schmitz, Senior Project Director, Department of Veterans Affairs
Hospital-based shootings are sudden and unpredictable, requiring staff to make quick and difficult decisions about running to save their own life versus staying to protect patients. Written plans to provide safety to patients, family and staff are required of all accredited hospitals, but specific actions for an armed intruder event are unique to each organization. Running is commonly accepted and is typically included within active shooter training courses. But what are the implications for those who are responsible for vulnerable patients who need intensive care and cannot protect themselves? Hearing how nursing staff actually behaved during multiple disasters will provide the foundation for an evidence-informed, systems- and community-based approach that organizations can use to evaluate their armed shooter response.

11:25 a.m. – 12:25 p.m. | Concurrent Breakout Sessions (choose one)

Beyond the Hospital: Creating Resiliency Across the Continuum of Care
Claudia Marroquin-Frometa, National Emergency Management, and Laura Byrne, Compliance Manager, Kaiser Foundation Health Plan
This session will discuss Kaiser Foundation Health Plan’s experience in ensuring system-wide compliance with the Emergency Preparedness Final Rule two years after its release. Presenters will share successes, opportunities and ongoing challenges, such as translating successful response and survey readiness in the hospital setting to other distant or remote sites, including ambulatory surgery centers. Focus will be placed on leveraging preparedness collaborations, successful communication strategies and partnerships beyond the hospital walls. Presenters will share customizable templates and tools, including a compliance monitoring and oversight tool, to help attendees identify gaps and opportunities for better alignment across care settings.

New Trends in Disaster Communications – Panel Discussion (Livestream)
Ryan Burgess, Prehospital Care Coordinator, UCLA Medical Center (moderator); Kurt Kainsinger, Director of Office of Emergency Preparedness, UCLA Health System; Kevin Nida, Senior Public Safety Advisor, FirstNet; and Soraya Peters, Vice President, ReddiNet, Hospital Association of Southern California
Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center paramedic base station had long relied upon dated radio infrastructure for its communication redundancy and was in need of more reliable and cost effective methodologies. This led to implementation of a new structure for satellite voice communications as well as new technology of dedicated broadband with the federal government FirstNet program.  This enhancement provided reliable redundancy for both the emergency management and paramedic base station programs at UCLA at a reasonable cost. These communication services are now available to many California hospitals. This presentation will outline these technologies, how UCLA utilized these systems, and how hospitals may implement them

VA Protocol for Maintaining Operations During Megafires
Gus Ballis, Environmental Program Manager, and Joseph Johnson, Emergency Planning Manager, VA Northern California Healthcare System
The Northern California Healthcare System is 1 of 170 regions within the US Department of Veterans Affairs. It includes 10 sites that extend from Sacramento to Oakland and Redding. During 2018 there were three megafires that created a level of smoke never experienced before that time. Every site was affected by smoke that threatened closure. EHS and engineering staff worked together to develop a response protocol that allowed continuous operations by minimizing internal smoke to very low levels. This detailed protocol allowed the system to continuously serve patients while safely protecting employees.

ABC’s of Rural Collaboration – Keeping it Elementary
Valerie Lakey, Director, PR/EP Coordinator, Mayers Memorial Hospital District, and Kenneth Luke, Disaster Coordinator, Mercy Medical Center
As hospital facilities, we are required to belong to formal coalitions which serve a necessary purpose. Often times these groups get tied up in the structure: agendas, timelines, red tape and formalities. One California rural hospital tried a very informal “elementary” approach to collaboration, and it has yielded A+ results. Networking and collaboration established through this process has allowed greater access to resource shortfalls and extended training opportunities. Also,  a counterpart is readily available at another hospital, group or agency ready to help when needed.

12:30 – 1:30 p.m. | Hosted Lunch 

1:30 – 2:30 p.m. | General Session — Strategic Response to Workplace Violence in Hospitals (Livestream)
Hector Alvarez, CTM, President, Alvarez Associates LLC, Workplace Threat Management
Incidents of workplace violence taking place in a hospital environment still have the ability to shock us.  Understanding the dynamics of violence and having the ability to recognize, and respond to, concerning or threatening behaviors before they can escalate is essential.  When violence does occur, hospital employees must respond quickly, effectively and with efficiency. Using strategies and exercises in-line with requirements for addressing workplace violence, learn how to create an environment where employees handle threat management and response with confidence. Understand how to avoid using language or actions during these events that create litigious situations for the hospitals. Assess a threat and react – doing what you can to create a safe and secure environment for your staff, your patients, and their families.

2:30 – 3:45 p.m. | General Session — Helping First Responders Help Themselves (Livestream)
Frank Goldstein PhD, Director of Behavioral Health and Resilience, Okaloosa County EMS and Director of Emerald Coast Crisis Stress Team
First responders provide critical services to communities in the aftermath of disasters, both natural and man-made. Their work is often dangerous, physically demanding, personally draining and heart-breaking. It can lead to health and mental health consequences, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), compassion fatigue and burnout. Dr. Goldstein will discuss how to create psychological plans for trauma survivors dealing with symptoms such as guilt, survivor guilt, shame, loss, amnesia and somatization.

3:45 p.m. | Closing Remarks


Hector R. Alvarez, CTM
Security Expert
Association of Threat Assessment Professionals

Hector R. Alvarez, CTM, is a security expert who specializes in workplace violence prevention, and a Certified Threat Manager™ by the Association of Threat Assessment Professionals. He has over 25 years of experience including time as a city police officer and security consultant. He has personally assessed and/or responded to thousands of potentially violent situations, developed numerous violence prevention programs and trained tens of thousands of employees and managers in the areas of crisis intervention, violence prevention, domestic terrorism and emergency management.

Garo Balkian, MD
Assistant Area Medical Director
Kaiser Permanente Woodland Hills Medical Center

Garo Balkian has been practicing emergency medicine at Kaiser Woodland Hills since August 2000. While there, he served as Assistant Chief of the Emergency Department from 2002-07 and Chief from 2009-15. Garo served as the Assistant Area Medical Director with oversight of the ED, Urgent Care, Radiology and Laboratory/Pathology. He is also responsible for his hospitals’ accreditation, regulatory issues, legal issues, risk management, patient safety and quality.

Gus Ballis
Environmental Program Manager
VA Northern California Healthcare System

Gus Ballis’ background is in the environmental, health and safety professions, including, but not limited to: environmental compliance, industrial hygiene, chemical safety, toxicology, medical surveillance, and training. Environmental expertise includes hazardous waste, underground storage tanks, air pollution permits, wastewater treatment, EPA, emergency response and risk management. He has worked in several different industries including health care, semiconductor manufacturing, aerospace, environmental consulting, hazardous waste remediation, asbestos abatement, and industrial manufacturing.

Seth Baruch
National Director for Energy and Utilities
Kaiser Permanente

Seth Baruch is National Director for Energy and Utilities at Kaiser Permanente. He is responsible for managing sustainable energy programs across the organization, including solar projects at a hundred different hospitals, data centers and medical office buildings. Part of this program includes the development of microgrids and rapid installation of electric vehicle charging stations at selected sites in California. Seth is also helping lead the effort for Kaiser Permanente to achieve carbon neutrality by 2020.

Ryan Burgess
Pre-Hospital Care Coordinator
UCLA Medical Center

Ryan is the Pre-Hospital Care/Paramedic Base Station Coordinator at UCLA Medical Center.  Additionally he is the Hospital Preparedness Coordinator for Hospital Association Southern California for services in Los Angeles County.  In his role, he provides assistance to hospitals in developing their emergency management programs as well as providing instruction in Hospital Incident Command System (HICS).  Previously, Ryan was with UCLA Medical Center as a Pre-Hospital Care Coordinator, Disaster Resource Center Director, and Emergency Department Clinical Manager. He was an emergency department nurse for many years as well as a flight nurse with Mercy Air and Life Flight Southern California.

Laura Byrne
Compliance Manager
Kaiser Permanente

Laura Byrne is a compliance manager in the National Compliance Office, Enterprise Regional Compliance-Care Delivery and Pharmacy unit at Kaiser Permanente, where she has worked since 2013.  She leads a team of clinical subject matter experts who are responsible for supporting regional partners in ensuring care delivery compliance and adherence to federal and state requirements, including emergency preparedness, in hospital and ambulatory settings.   Laura has a master’s degree in business administration from San Francisco State University, and degrees in physiotherapy (McMaster University) and sociology (University of Western Ontario).  She is a member of the Health Care Compliance Association and a Certified Professional in Health Care Compliance (CHC).

Kelly Dickey, RN
Department Administrator, Family Medicine
Kaiser Permanente Woodland Hills Medical Center

Calvin Fakkema
Manager, Safety & Security
Childrens Hospital of Orange County

Calvin Fakkema has 13 years of experience in Safety, Security, Facilities, and Emergency Management. In his current role at CHOC Children’s he provides leadership to Safety, Security, Parking and Valet Services, and Emergency Management. Additionally, he plans, develops and directs an organization-wide environmental safety program that ensures a safe environment for patients, employees and visitors. He manages the Safety Program, Environment of Care Committee and the Emergency Management Program. Calvin is a certified Healthcare Safety Professional and certified Healthcare Emergency Professional.

Susan Fanelli
Assistant Director
California Department of Public Health (CDPH)

Susan Fanelli is assistant director for the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) where she provides high-level management and coordination of projects involving intra-departmental collaboration on health care reform, state and local governmental relations, public/private partnerships and other projects relating to public health. She had been deputy director of the Office of Emergency Preparedness for CDPH since 2013. Susan was a key collaborator with public and private stakeholders to develop the comprehensive statewide survey of hospitals, Statewide Public Health and Medical Care Surge Plan, and the Standards and Guidelines for Healthcare Delivery during Surge. Fanelli’s previous positions at the California Department of Health Services included chief of the Program Support Section where she managed the financial aspects of the Public Health Emergency Preparedness Office and oversaw the Hospital Preparedness Program.

Steve Fellows
Executive Vice President & COO
Cottage Health


Marc Futernick, MD
Emergency Physician
Dignity Health California Hospital Medical Center
Regional Director for VEP Healthcare

Marc Futernick is an emergency physician working primarily in Los Angeles. He is Chairman of the Board of Directors and a Regional Medical Director for VEP Healthcare. He is also an original founder of the “green team” at Dignity Health California Hospital Medical Center (CHMC), called the Environmental Action Committee. Dr. Futernick is a Past President of the California Chapter of the American College of Emergency Physicians. He also serves on the board of the Dignity Health California Hospital Medical Center Foundation.

Frank L. Goldstein, PhD
Director, Behavioral Health and Resilience
Okaloosa County EMS

Frank L. Goldstein, PhD, is the Director of Behavioral Health and Resilience for Okaloosa County EMS. He is also the Director of Emerald Coast Crisis Stress Team. Senior Clinical Mental Health Specialist, Florida Disaster Medical Response Federal Team, Northwest Florida Regional Medical Response Team and Okaloosa-Walton Medical Reserve Corps. He has 40 years of experience as a first responder, Commander in the United States Air Force, a director, educator, behavioral scientist, clinician, business leader, author and motivational speaker. He is skilled in disaster support, crisis and stress management, post-traumatic stress disorders, human sexuality, psychological operations, information operations, human factors profiling (domestic and international), and psychological and analytical research.

Jennie Gregg
Emergency Management Officer
Kaiser Permanente Woodland Hills Medical Center

Jennie M. Gregg is a certified Emergency Management Specialist by the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Preparedness (Cal OES), with additional trainer credentials from FEMA, the Hospital Association of Southern California (HASC), and more. She has a passion for public safety, public health, and successful team building. Jennie has worked in the health care industry since 2006, and is currently the Emergency Management Officer at Kaiser Permanente, Woodland Hills Medical Center in Los Angeles County.

Anne Griffin
Clinical Investigator
Department of Veterans Affairs

Ms. Anne (Belle) Griffin is a Clinical Investigator with the Veterans Emergency Management Evaluation Center, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). As an active registered nurse with experience in the fields of neurosurgery, peri-operative nursing and public health; her research focuses on projects that support VA’s public health preparedness and response capabilities within clinical settings. She leads VEMEC’s role in supporting and leading the Disaster Nursing Call to Action, a collaborative effort to create a national nursing workforce with the knowledge, skills, and abilities to respond to disasters and public health emergencies in a timely and effective manner.

Robin Guenther, FAIA
Principal and Senior Adviser
Perkins+Will and Health Care Without Harm

Robin Guenther, FAIA, is a principal at Perkins+Will and senior adviser to Health Care Without Harm. An expert in sustainable health care design, Guenther’s projects include leading the expansion of the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford and ongoing work with institutions such as Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. She co-coordinated the “Green Guide for Health Care” and released the second edition of Sustainable Healthcare Architecture, with Gail Vittori, in 2013.

Dan Hanfling, MD
Vice President, Technical Staff

Dan Hanfling, MD, is Vice President, Technical Staff at In-Q-Tel, specifically working with B. Next, the IQT Lab exploring the national security implications of epidemics and outbreak events and how to detect and prevent them. He currently serves as the co-chair of the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine Forum on Medical and Public Health Preparedness for Catastrophic Events.

Jack Herrmann, MSEd, NCC, LMHC
Director, Division of External Stakeholder Engagement, Office of External Affairs
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response​

Jack Herrmann is the Acting Director, National Healthcare Preparedness Program within the Office of Emergency Management and Medical Operations in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).  He provides administrative leadership over the nation’s only source of federal funding for health care delivery system readiness for disasters and other emergencies, ASPR’s Hospital Preparedness Grant Program (HPP).
In addition Mr. Hermann is the Director of External Stakeholder Engagement within ASPR’s Office of External Affairs where he oversees strategic engagement with federal and non-federal partners to advance the agency’s mission.  Prior to this position, he served as the Deputy Director of ASPR’s Office of Policy and Planning providing programmatic representation and leadership in policy discussions, meetings, and negotiations with officials and staff from other departments within HHS, other federal agencies, the White House, Congress, and public and private stakeholders.

Craig Johnson, MBA, CEM
Chief, Disaster Medical Services Division
EMS Authority

With over 20 years in emergency management, Craig Johnson currently serves as the Chief of the Disaster Medical Services Division for the Emergency Medical Services Authority. Craig coordinates and directs the provision of medical services for homeland security and disaster protection of the populace as part of the State of California Emergency Medical Services (EMS) system. He oversees the development of state disaster medical response plans and ensures readiness of the State’s medical response capabilities, including the EMS Authority’s mobile medical assets. He also serves as a liaison and advisor to local, region, state, and federal partners for disaster preparedness, training, and response planning.

Joseph Johnson
Emergency Planning Manager
VA Northern California Health Care System

A US Army Veteran, Joseph Johnson has served 25 years for the Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care Systems in Northern California.  Joseph is currently the emergency management specialist for the VA Northern California Health Care System’s Sacramento Valley Division. Before joining the VA team in Sacramento, he was the Emergency Manager for the San Francisco VA Health Care System from 2007 to 2016. Joseph is currently the co-chair of the Sacramento Hospital Emergency Preparedness Coordinators Meeting. 

Richard Johnson
Health Officer
Health and Human Services, Alpine County

From 2002, Rick has been the Health Officer for both Mono and Inyo Counties. He is the Alpine County Health Officer since 2014.  Additionally, he is the Medical Health Operational Area Coordinator (MHOAC) and has a certification as a HAZMAT Technician. Rick is the Chair of the Public Health Emergency Preparedness and Response (PHEPR) Committee of the California Conference of Local Health Officers (CCLHO). In June, Rick received the Outstanding Leadership Award from CDPH and EMSA. He is currently facilitating the development of a California Pediatric Surge Plan/Toolkit for CDPH and EMSA.

Kurt Kainsinger, MPH
Director, Office of Emergency Preparedness
UCLA Health

Kurt Kainsinger has been the director of the Office of Emergency Kurt Kainsinger has been the director of the Office of Emergency Preparedness at UCLA Health since 2012. Prior to this position, Kurt served in the role of Disaster Resource Center manager since 2007. Before UCLA Health, Kurt worked for the UCLA Police Department where he was an emergency medical technician for the campus 9-1-1 ambulance and as the emergency medical services manager.

Glen Klein
New York City Detective (Ret.)
NYPD Emergency Services Unit (Ret.)
New York City Paramedic (Ret.)


Valerie Lakey
Director, Public Relations & PIO/Emergency Preparedness Coordinator
Mayers Memorial Hospital District

Valerie Lakey is the director of public relations and legislation at Mayers Memorial Hospital District. She also serves as the public information officer and emergency preparedness coordinator. She has completed a number of emergency management training programs, including the Advanced Public Information Officer Training at the Center for Domestic Preparedness in Alabama. Ms. Lakey has planned and facilitated hospital-wide trainings and coordinated educational materials for staff. During two wildfire disasters she was instrumental in keeping patients, families and the community informed.

Kenneth Luke
Disaster Coordinator
Mercy Medical Center Redding

Kenneth R. Luke is the Interim Manager for Safety Security & Emergency Management at a level II Trauma Center that covers a large area of the North State. Before emerging into the world of Emergency Management and Security, Kenneth worked as an Emergency Room RN for over 14 years mainly in a leadership role. Kenneth has lead his facility through multiple disasters to include active shooters, wildfires and snow storms.

Claudia Marroquin-Frometa
Emergency Management Consultant
Kaiser Permanente

Claudia has a combined 22 years of experience in disaster preparedness, education, communications, public relations and public speaking. She has spent the last 12 years in the emergency management field improving disaster response strategies with Los Angeles County Hospitals and state initiatives. A member of the National Advisory Committee on Hospital Incident Command System for The California Emergency Medical Services Authority (EMSA), she has been an instructor for the quarterly HASC (Hospital Association of Southern California) Hospital Disaster Management Training Series (HDMT) since 2014. She is also a member of EMAC (Emergency Management Advisory Council) for CHA.

Gary Miller
Emergency Preparedness Program Manager
Adventist Health

Gary Miller has served 22 years in health care, primarily working in the emergency department and with emergency management. Gary has served as Emergency Preparedness Manager at Adventist Health and Rideout since 2015. Gary also helped facilitate response to multiple real-world events including, extended IT downtime events, HAZMAT decontamination, internal floods, as well as the Oroville Dam situation and the Camp Fire complex event. In addition, Gary has 13 years’ experience with the fire service, obtaining the rank of Firefighter II.

Kevin Muszynski
Project Manager, Support Services
Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center​

Kevin Nida, Battalion Chief (Ret.) EMT-P, COML, COMT
Senior Public Safety Advisor

After 37 years of service with Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD), Chief Kevin Nida is a Senior Public Safety Advisor with the First Responder Network (FirstNet) Authority. During his time with LAFD, in addition to field assignments, Chief Nida served in the Mayor’s office leading technology projects, fire dispatch, LAFD’s FEMA Urban Search and Rescue Team, as a Communications Leader, Specialist, and Technician.  His experience encompasses the law enforcement, fire, and EMS.  Chief Nida is the immediate past President of the California State Firefighters Association, a graduate of Loyola Marymount’s Martin Gang Institute, The National Interagency Fire Center, and holds relative certifications and licenses.

Beth Neilson
Regional EM Director
Adventist Health

Beth is a healthcare system preparedness professional with nearly two decades emergency management experience.  She currently serves as the Adventist Health Regional Director of Emergency Management supporting the development of a system-wide emergency management infrastructure and leading her local team of emergency managers toward implementation. In addition, Beth has served on and led hospital incident management teams responding to large scale natural disasters, critical infrastructure failures, public health emergencies, high-profile civil disturbances and, most recently, the 2018 Camp Fire in Butte County.

Jenifer Nyhuis
Signature Healthcare, Vista del Mar Hospital

Jenifer Nyhuis joined Signature Healthcare Services in January 2015 and worked in various departments in three of Signature Healthcare’s facilities in Chicago, Pasadena and Ventura. 6 months into her CEO position at Vista Del Mar, the Thomas Fire burned two of the hospital’s patient care buildings. Jenifer and her team executed a full evacuation of 70 patients and over 25 employees in under 15 minutes. In subsequent months, Jenifer has worked diligently with the Governor’s office, state legislators, the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development, California Department of Public Health, contractors, engineers, and architects to recover the lost utilities and damages from the fire.

Soraya Peters
Vice President
Hospital Association of Southern California

Soraya Peters is the vice president of ReddiNet Healthcare Communication Technology at the Hospital Association of Southern California. Previously, Soraya worked on Space Shuttle Projects and many successful web sites like the Salt Lake City Olympics, ABC, Fox, etc. Ms. Peters has certificates for Program Management from Cal Tech, ICS from FEMA Emergency Management Institute.

Alexander Rakul, MHA, PhD
Assistant Medical Group Administrator
Kaiser Permanente Woodland Hills Medical Center

Christopher Riccardi
Healthcare Preparedness Specialist
C. Riccardi Consulting & Training

Chris Riccardi, CHSP, CHEP, is the Business Continuity Program Manager for CHOC Children’s hospital in Orange, California. His responsibilities include the development, implementation and management of the enterprise-wide Business Continuity Program. Chris serves as a Subject Matter Expert with ASPR TRACIE. Formerly, Chris was the Emergency Management Officer for Providence Health & Services with direct responsibility of the emergency preparedness program for two medical centers, including management of the federally funded Healthcare Preparedness Program. Chris served as Chair of Providence Health & Services enterprise-wide Emergency Management Steering Committee and Chair for the California Hospital Association’s Emergency Management Advisory Committee. He is a certified healthcare safety and emergency management professional.

Robyn Rothman, JD
Climate and Health Policy Manager
Health Care Without Harm 

Robyn Rothman is the Climate and Health Policy Manager at Health Care Without Harm, where she helps health systems reduce their carbon footprint, become anchors in resilient communities, and provide leadership in policy advocacy and climate solutions. She leads the California Health Care Climate Alliance, a coalition of the five largest health systems in the state that is dedicated to advocating for policy and regulations related to clean air, clean energy and climate resiliency. She has extensive health policy and programmatic experience, and a law degree with a health law concentration.

Susan Schmitz
Senior Project Director
Department of Veterans Affairs

Susan Schmitz is a Senior Project Director at the Veterans Emergency Management Evaluation Center (VEMEC) within the US Department of Veterans Affairs. She has worked for over 10 years in disaster research, education, and intervention and holds a Master of Arts degree in International Disaster Psychology from the University of Denver. Susan plays a leadership role focusing on health care emergency preparedness research and practice. Additionally, she continues to integrate disaster psychology into her work by developing resilience training for healthcare employees.

Steve Stark, MHA, MSOP, ACHE
Orchard Hospital

Steve Stark serves as chief executive officer at Orchard Hospital, where he is responsible for aligning the hospital mission and vision with physicians, the board of directors and communities in Butte County. Steve works closely with the CFO, COO/CNO and managers to create a health care delivery system that is safer and more efficient for patients. He has spoken to groups across the country about integrating continuous process improvement and technology into daily workflow to provide better patient care.

Susan Stone, PhD
Senior Vice President and CEO
Sharp Coronado Hospital

Susan Stone, PhD, is the senior vice president and chief executive officer of Sharp Coronado Hospital, a 181-bed, full-service community hospital specializing in total joint replacements and advanced liver care. In addition, Stone oversees Sharp’s clinical laboratory services across the system. Known for innovative patient-centered care program development, she is a national Patient Centered Care Fellow. She contributed to the development of the Designated Patient Centered Care Hospital Program. Stone’s patient-centered research has been featured in the peer reviewed Health Environments Research and Design Journal. She is also an active member of the Association for California Nurse Leaders.

Steven Storbakken
Director, Emergency Preparedness & Environmental Safety
Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center

An international speaker and published author, Steve have over 20+ years’ experience as a Red Cross responder/volunteer, former disaster Chairman for Los Angeles and Glendale (Board) Chapters. He is one of the Hospital Disaster Management Training Academy Instructors for L.A. County. Steve has received several awards throughout his career, among those being Providence’s Stewardship, Red Cross’s Golden Bear, and Founding member of the shakeout team that won California Institute of Technology’s Shoemaker Science Award, which currently has over 46 million international participants each year.

Dean Strait
Outreach Director
Feather River Tribal Health

Dean Strait is currently the Outreach Director at Feather River Tribal Health in Oroville California. He is in charge of their new Wellness Center aimed at lifestyle improvement for the Native American population in three northern California counties. He has worked as a registered nurse for over 23 years, including infection control, intensive care, cardiac rehab and public health. Prior to his current position he was the Infection Control Manager for Adventist Health Feather RiverHospital.

Ryan Tuchmayer
Associate Director, Disaster Preparedness & Response, Environmental Health & Safety
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center

Mr. Tuchmayer is the Associate Director of Disaster Preparedness & Response for Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. He organizes the medical center’s emergency preparedness, mitigation, response, and recovery efforts. He also serves as a liaison between umbrella hospitals, clinics, and pre-hospital providers in the western region of L.A. County. He is a member of the Los Angeles County Disaster Medical Assistance Team (DMAT CA-9) and has deployed for exercises and disaster events, including hurricanes Katrina, Rita, and Ike.

Michael Tutko
Director, Security Operations, Emergency Management & Disaster Planning
Kaiser Permanente Woodland Hills Medical Center


Margaret Vinci
Manager, Regional Coordinator
ShakeAlert, Caltech

Crystal Walsh
Trauma Manager
Mercy Medical Center Redding

Crystal Walsh is the Trauma Program Manager at Mercy Medical Center, a Level II Trauma Center. She has 13 years of clinical experience in the emergency room in both bedside and supervisory roles. As the Disaster Response Coordinator for 2 years, she helped facilitate drills and instituted protocols for shelter in place, dependent care during disasters and collaborated on surge plans. As the trauma program manager she is the back up for disaster response coordinator and still closely works in all aspects of disaster response.

Tim Williams
Administrative Director, Physician & Outpatient Services
Adventist Health

Tim is a health care executive with eight years of experience in outpatient and clinic operations. He currently serves as the Administrative Director for Physician and Outpatient Services with Adventist Health in Butte/Tehama Counties of California. Prior to his time with Adventist Health, he served as an officer in the United States Air Force. His role was with the Medical Service Corps, leading outpatient operations in health care facilities. He also ran the healthcare Emergency Operations Center during his time in the military. In addition, Mr. Williams served as a Pastor in the Seventh-Day Adventist Church for eight years.

Mike Wiltermood
President and CEO
Enloe Medical Center

Mike Wiltermood has nearly 30 years of hospital leadership experience and has been the chief executive officer at Enloe Medical Center since July 1, 2009. Prior to that, he was Enloe Medical Center’s chief operating officer for two years, overseeing day-to-day operations. Mike is the former executive vice president/chief operating officer of Fremont-Rideout Health Group in Yuba City, Calif.  Additionally, Mike has held executive-level positions at hospitals and health systems in Arizona, Idaho and Washington. Mike is a fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives, and currently serves as a director on the California Hospital Association Board.



Tuition fees are for in-person seminars or livestream
Registrations received after August 23, add $100.​

Full conference (Tuesday AND Wednesday):
Members $580, Nonmembers $775

One day only (Tuesday OR Wednesday):
Members $325, Nonmembers $435

*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 and/or Livestream Video Release

CHA may photograph and/or livestream this event. If you prefer not to be photographed or visible during the livestream, 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 session is a prerequisite for receiving professional continuing education. Attendees must sign in at the conference and, when required, include their professional license number. CE certificates will be emailed. (Amount of CE offered subject to change.)

Compliance — The Compliance Certification Board (CCB)® has approved this event for up to 14.1  live CCB CEUs. Continuing Education Units are awarded based on individual attendance records. Granting of prior approval in no way constitutes endorsement by CCB of this event content or of the event sponsor.

Health Care Executives — CHA is authorized to award up to 11.75 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 up to 14.10 conference contact hours.

Risk Management — This meeting has been approved for a total of 11.0 (Conference Day One 5.75; Conference Day Two 5.25) contact hours of Continuing Education Credit toward fulfillment of the requirements of ASHRM designations of FASHRM (Fellow) and DFASHRM (Distinguished Fellow) and towards CPHRM renewal.

Livestream Info

Livestream is here! Why? Because livestream allows you to hear and view the conference from the convenience of your own office or conference room. Plus, multiple people can experience the seminar with a single registration fee. Livestream attendees can ask questions during the program, just like in-person attendees, and have the same access to presentations as in-person attendees.

Livestream tuition entitles the registrant to:

  • a single connection to the event (NOTE: don’t risk your connection by sharing with others — only one connection will be allowed in.)
  • CEs (you must attest to participation to receive CE credit)

Additional Participants and CEs
Livestream participants who are not the registered attendee may receive CEs for $35 per person, per day. Individuals requesting CE credit must attest to their participation in the livestream event and pay by credit card.

Host Hotels

The Westin Pasadena and Sheraton Pasadena Hotel are the host hotels for the conference. 

The Westin Pasadena
191 N Los Robles Ave.
Pasadena, CA 91101
(866) 837-4181 (reservations)

The Westin Pasadena has rooms available at the discounted rate of $199 for all nights during the conference. For reservations, call (866) 837-4181 and mention the “CHA Disaster Planning Conference.” The deadline for discounted sleeping rooms is August 23. To book a room online, click here.  

Sheraton Pasadena Hotel
303 Cordova Street
Pasadena, CA 91101
(800) 457-7940 (reservations)

The Sheraton Pasadena Hotel has rooms available at the discounted rate of $179 for all nights during the conference. For reservations, call (800) 457-7940 and mention the “CHA Disaster Planning Conference.” The deadline for discounted sleeping rooms is August 23. To book a room online, click here.  

Abstract Submission

CHA is now accepting submissions for presentations for the 2019 CHA Disaster Planning for California Hospitals conference. The conference is a unique opportunity for your organization to showcase and share its emergency preparedness knowledge and expertise with a cross-section of peers. Submissions must be received by May 10.

Click here to submit an abstract.

Best Practices Poster Showcase

The Best Practices Poster Showcase is 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.

Congratulations to the Best Practices Poster Showcase Winners!

  • Alameda County Emergency Medical Services Agency — A Local California Pediatric Readiness & Disaster CONOPs in Action – Navigating Change & Taking Coalition Partners to New Heights

  • Naval Hospital Twentynone Palms — Innovative Seismic Upgrade Programs for Federal Hospitals and Medical Facilities – Case Studies

  • Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center — Access and Functional Needs Disaster Risk Assessment

  • Safe-T-Proof — Beyond the Code:  Prioritization Protocol for Hospital Content Earthquake Bracing

  • Santa Clara Valley Medical Center — Disaster Drill Alert: Don’t Forget Nutrition!

  • Scripps Memorial Hospital — Increasing Perceived Levels of Disaster Preparedness in Emergency Department Staff

  • UCLA — REMM: A Tool for Just-In-Time Radiation Emergency Medical Management

Conference Committee


Mary Massey, BSN, MA, CHEP, PHN, Vice President, Emergency Management,  California Hospital Association

Committee Members

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

Tim Beringer, Director of Safety, Security, and Emergency Management, Eisenhower Health

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

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

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

Connie Lackey, RN, Director, Emergency Preparedness, Providence Saint Joseph Medical Center

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

Alex Lichtenstein, Emergency Management Specialist, UCLA Health

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

Mark Shirley, MS, CSP, CHMM, Environmental Risk Consultant, Sutter Valley Hospitals

Kristina Spurgeon, Emergency Manager, University of California, Davis Health

Ryan Tuchmayer, Associate Director, Disaster Preparedness & Response, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center

Matthew Washburn, Disaster Coordinator & Safety Officer, Orchard Hospital

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!

Want more information?


We would like to thank our corporate sponsors and exhibitors for their support of the 2019 Disaster Planning for California Hospitals Conference.

Gold Sponsor to Date:


Silver Sponsors to Date:


Exhibitors to Date:

  • 3M
  • Advance Egress Solutions, Inc.
  • All Over Communications
  • American Technologies, Inc.
  • Blue Can Water
  • California Department of Public Health (CDPH)
  • California Poison Control
  • Cyalume Technologies
  • Disaster Management Systems
  • Disaster Medical Services Division, California Emergency Medical Services Authority
  • DLX Deployed Logix
  • DQE
  • Earthquake Country Alliance
  • ETC Building & Design
  • Ethos Evacuation Strategies (Med Sled)
  • Everbridge
  • Flexmort
  • GCC – Guest Communications Corporation
  • Global Security Systems
  • Grainger, Inc.
  • HARBRO Emergency Services & Restoration
  • ILC Dover
  • Image Sales, Inc.
  • Juvare
  • Kappler Inc.
  • Kinemetrics
  • Ludlum Measurement
  • Mackay Communications
  • Manifest MedEx
  • Meals For All
  • Mobile Heartbeat
  • Mortuary Response Solutions
  • Pelican
  • Practical Hospital Services
  • Prep ICS
  • QuakeCottage
  • Quake Kare / Emergency Ready 
  • ReadyAmerica
  • ReddiNet
  • Red E Services
  • Response Technologies
  • RRS Patient Decontamination
  • Silver Peak
  • Simpler Life Emergency Provisions
  • SOS Survival Products
  • SOV Security
  • SSCOR, Inc.
  • SUNKYUNG Industry Co, LTD
  • Teleira
  • TeleQuality Communications
  • Tidal Basin
  • U.S. Water
  • Veoci
  • VeriCor
  • Western Shelter Systems
  • Wise Company
  • X2nSat