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Healthcare Coalitions Across the Nation Band Together to Ready for Disasters
Date:4/3/2013

FAIRFAX, Va., April 3, 2013 /PRNewswire-iReach/ -- Events like Superstorm Sandy and Hurricane Katrina have underscored the need for healthcare providers, emergency management and other response partners to be ready to work together to meet a community's health and medical needs following a disaster. A new partnership launched this month will help healthcare coalitions – the organizations responsible for facilitating that coordination in communities nationwide – share ideas and resources to foster healthcare resilience.

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The National Healthcare Coalition Resource Center (NHCRC) is a joint not-for-profit program that will provide technical assistance to emerging and established healthcare coalitions through various workshops, training opportunities, and its yearly National Healthcare Coalition Preparedness Conference. NHCRC was founded by three leading regional healthcare coalitions: Indiana's MESH Coalition, the Northern Virginia Hospital Alliance, and the Seattle-Tacoma area's Northwest Healthcare Response Network.

"The launch of the National Healthcare Coalition Resource Center represents a significant step in the development of these important public safety and emergency preparedness organizations throughout the United States," said Chad Priest , the Chief Executive Officer for MESH Coalition."I'm hopeful that the NHCRC, through our annual conference, workshops and our new website, will serve as a forum for both collaboration and innovation."

NHCRC's new website, www.healthcarecoalitions.org, provides a platform for healthcare coalitions, healthcare organizations, public health, emergency medical services, emergency management and other professionals nationwide to discuss disaster preparedness, relief and recovery in real time. Via the site's discussion forum, users will be able to swap best-practice training models, plans, tools and other resources. The site will also allow users access to information about upcoming events as well as materials and tools from other national preparedness events.

"Most healthcare coalitions receive federal funding to help hospitals and other healthcare organizations prepare for and respond to emergencies, but there hasn't been a lot of guidance about the best way to go about building and sustaining these coalitions," said Cynthia Dold , Program Manager of the Northwest Healthcare Response Network. "We're excited about the opportunity to share best practices and learnings with groups across the country who are faced with similar challenges."

NHCRC hopes that its website and other engagement platforms will help ensure public health and safety through the promotion and advancement of healthcare coalitions across the nation working together.

The NHCRC's mission is to provide a forum for sharing ideas, innovations and best practices for building and growing coalitions. It's an evolving resource created by coalitions, for coalitions.  For more information on the National Healthcare Coalition Resource Center or its upcoming National Healthcare Coalition Preparedness Conference, please visit www.healthcarecoalitions.org or follow us on Twitter @HCCoalitions and Facebook

Media Contact: Zachary Corrigan National Healthcare Coalition Resource Center, 703-894-8110, zachary.corrigan@novaha.org

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