The Southeastern Regional Pediatric Disaster Response Network (SRPDRN) is a voluntary network of health care providers, public health departments, volunteers, and emergency responders from Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee. The purpose of SRPDRN is to provide regional pediatric surge capacity and resources in the event of large-scale emergencies or disasters that overwhelm local or state pediatric resources.
Over the past five years, the South Central Preparedness and Emergency Response Learning Center (SCPERLC) has collaborated with its financial sponsors, the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) and the Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDH), and more than 70 agencies and institutions to improve the pediatric preparedness response strategies of public health, emergency responders, and pediatric providers in the Southeastern United States. Disasters, such as Hurricane Katrina, the earthquakes in Haiti and Chile, and other emergencies have illustrated the need for a coordinated and collective response to the needs of children as children are among the most vulnerable to injury, disease, and exploitation in any emergency.
Coordination of the activities of the SRPDSRN is provided by the SCPERLC in the School of Public Health of the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Strategic direction for the Network is provided by the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee currently has 21 members representing the sponsoring health departments and institutions from each of the states in the region. The Executive Committee is responsible for vetting and approving all policies, procedures, and documents produced by the participants in the Network and in expanding the number of signatories to the Network Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). The Network MOU is the formal framework within which the Network operates. The development of policy proposals for the operation of the Network and its role in emergency preparedness and response is conducted by five Work Groups. Work Group 1 focuses on developing an Emergency Operations Plan (EOP) for the Network; Work Group 2 focuses on licensing and credentialing issues; Work Group 3 focuses on pediatric-specific resource typing; Work Group 4 focuses on developing a federal legislation proposal concerning disaster declarations; and Work Group 5 focuses on pediatric patient transportation issues.
Current signatories of the MOU are: Alabama Department of Public Health, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, Children’s Health System of Alabama, East Tennessee Children’s Hospital, Florida Association of Children’s Hospitals, Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital, Mississippi State Department of Health, Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt, Sacred Heart Health System, St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital, and T.C. Thompson Children’s Hospital.
For more information about the Network and becoming a participant please contact Andy Rucks – Andrew C. Rucks, Ph.D.; Professor, Department of Health Care Organization and Policy; School of Public Health; The University of Alabama at Birmingham; RPHB 320, 1720 2nd Avenue South, Birmingham, AL 35294-0022; Office Telephone: 205.975.8967