UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON SCHOOL OF NURSING  

Disaster Nursing

TopOff4Natural disasters such as earthquakes or floods can overwhelm community resources.  Nurses are the rate limiting step in any coordinated response to a community wide disaster.  Nurses and especially public health nurses are needed to respond to all types of disasters or mass casualty events.  Basic competencies for nurses include:

  1. caring for afflicted patients in a disaster,
  2. practicing safely during a disaster,
  3. implementing and evaluating institutional and community resources and protocols in preparation for disasters,
  4. reporting and communicating during disasters, and
  5. accessing up-to-date information. 

Advanced practice disaster nursing competencies have also been developed. 

During a disaster, nurses are likely to function at the forefront of patient encounters where they require clinical and leadership skills to function effectively.  Nurses commonly provide leadership in organizations and agencies; for example, in the development of institutional and community health care protocols.  Advanced practice nurses need additional training to hone and to apply these skills in preparation for and in response to disasters and environmental problems.  The course work, trainings and especially the certificate program in Emergency Preparedness and Response is designed to provide these advanced nursing practice skills.

Disaster Nursing Competencies:

Emergency preparedness and Response Certificate:

Course Information :