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When Disaster Strikes, the Central Ohio Trauma System (COTS) Relies on Onset Technology's OnPage® Critical Messaging System for Communications
Date:8/25/2014

ystem (COTS) received numerous requests from central Ohio healthcare agencies for immediate and accurate communications about an evolving medical emergency.

“A water main break occurred in one of our major cities, affecting one of our hospital systems causing the shut down of the entire water supply to the hospital,” recalled Kelsey Blackburn. “At that point, the main issue was not that they didn’t have power – because they had their own generators – it was because without water they couldn’t warm their hospital, because they needed water for their boilers.”

The hospital, with over 300 patients, was contemplating evacuation. Other hospitals and patients in the central Ohio region could also be affected.

“During the Polar Vortex, many of our healthcare agencies in our region had specific needs or requests for information,” said Kelsey Blackburn. “With only two staff members on rotation and multiple requests, (OnPage®) enabled our partners to send an email to the COTS Healthcare Incident Liaison (HIL) staff, and then receive an email confirmation that we had received it. It allowed them to see that we were in the process of returning calls.”

COTS HIL is a conduit for communications -- accurate and timely situational awareness, resource management, and acts as a liaison between the medical community, at the institutional level, county level, regional level and the state level.

“The ability for a healthcare facility or individual to communicate with the HIL via the paging system through email communication, rather than phone communication, was imperative,” stated Kelsey Blackburn. “For us to have documentation through the email paging system provided a crucial asset during this emergency. The email feature is huge, beca
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