Despite Planning, Hurricane Sandy Prompts Evacuations at NYC Hospitals

November 7, 2012 | Strategic Insights for Health System


The failure of generators and other equipment due to flooding caused by Hurricane Sandy required New York City’s Bellevue Hospital Center to evacuate patients to other facilities, states a November 1, 2012, New York Times article. Although some hospital executives, city officials, and others have expressed concerns about why the facility was not evacuated prior to the storm, proper disaster planning and the efforts of the hospital’s employees and the National Guard helped ensure that all of the hospital’s patients were successfully transferred to safety. The nature of the evacuation has caused many to consider how disaster drills are conducted, including an executive from another hospital who is quoted in the article as saying, “as prepared as we think we are we’ve never had a mock disaster drill where we carried patients downstairs. I’m shocked that we didn’t do that. Now we’re going to.” An October 30, 2012, CNN article describes the need for evacuation at another hospital, New York University’s Langone Medical Center.

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