Houston is both the home of significant chemical processing operations and an identified target for terrorism by Homeland Security. As such, Texas Children’s MUST be prepared to provide decontamination for victims of an accidental or intentional release of chemicals in the Houston area.
During September 30 to October 4, “Decon Week” will be held at Texas Children’s Hospital. The department of Organizational Resilience will host a series of Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) approved decontamination trainings for Texas Children’s staff. These will include an 8-hour first receiver training and a 4-hour awareness training at Texas Children’s Medical Center Campus, Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus and Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands.
The 8-hour training is for staff interested in becoming members of the decontamination or “Decon” team. This team is made up of volunteer staff members who attend the annual training, bi-annual meetings, and also participate in an annual decontamination exercise (to be held the last half of October 2019). Both operational and support members are needed on the team.
The team plays a vital role in protecting the safety and security of patients, visitors, and staff by performing decontamination activities prior to entry into our facilities. Further, the decontamination process helps the victim by limiting exposure to the contaminant on their skin and clothing.
The 4-hour awareness training is meant for Emergency Center and Urgent Care Nursing, and other staff who may encounter a “one off” contamination that occurred at a home, school, or industrial setting. These staff are trained to identify potentially contaminated patients, and direct them outside to our built-in decontamination showers (or outdoor decon area at Urgent Cares) to receive instruction to conduct “self-decon” before entering the facility.
Any staff interested in joining the decontamination team and attending the 8-hour training, or staff interested in the 4-hour awareness training, should contact Emergency Management at ext. 4-1237 or use the link below to sign up for a training and exercise that are convenient to their schedule.