Articles from 2009

Author(s):Brigid Ryan, JDParis Nourmohammadi, JDOn June 11, 2009, the director of the World Health Organization (WHO) raised the phase of alert in the Global Influenza Plan from level five to level six. The cause for this was the H1N1 virus which had already affected several countries. A level five alert is declared when more than one country in a single WHO geographic region is affected by the same virus. A level six declaration means that the community outbreaks are occurring in at least two WHO geographic regions. Once such a declaration is made, little time remains before mitigation efforts must ...Read More
CHHS hosted the "Training in Law and Policy Issues Related to the Public Health Response to Biological Emergencies: Public Health Catastrophes -- Past, Present, and Future" conference for the Middle Atlantic Regional Center of Excellence for Biodefense and Emerging Infectious Disease Research (MARCE) from Nov. 10-11, 2009. H1N1 influenza and pandemic flu response was a major topic of discussion.
Author(s):Adrian Wilairat, JDRobin J. Clark, JDContinuity of government (COG) planning for local government is an important aspect of our nation's preparedness. COG plans help to prepare local government officials for emergencies in their jurisdiction by identifying legal authorities, orders of succession, and alternate facilities. This article summarizes relevant guidance, outlines key features, and provides substantive examples of the content of local government COG plans. This article appeared in the September/October 2009 issue of the Journal of Emergency Management.JEM-7-5-03-bringing_it_home.pdf
Author(s):Talley Kovacs, JDMichael Greenberger, JDMarita Mike, MD, JDProfessor Michael Greenberger's written testimony for a hearing before the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary Subcommittee on Terrorism and Homeland Security, held Sept. 22, 2009. The thesis of the testimony is as followes: The Nation can upgrade security measures at those biosafety level ("BSL") laboratories that handle the most dangerous pathogens ("BSL-3" and "BSL-4" labs), so that federal government can develop countermeasures to potential terror attacks without having that research in and of itself pose a threat to national security. At the end of this testimony, we make recommendations in aid of ...Read More
CHHS Director Michael Greenberger, JD, joined CHHS Health Director Marita Mike, MD, JD; Professor Diane Hoffmann, JD, MS, director of the Law & Health Care Program at the University of Maryland School of Law; and Professor Wilbur Chen, MD, MS, from the University of Maryland School of Medicine Center for Vaccine Development, for "Adapting to New Threats: H1N1 Flu and You" on Sept. 16, 2009.
Governor Martin O'Malley announces the creation of the Maryland Civic Guard for Emergency Preparedness during his keynote address at the Maryland Meta-Leadership Summit on July 16, 2009. CHHS and the Maryland Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) will play a critical role in the Civic Guard initiative. Video courtesy of the CDC Foundation.
Author(s):Jillian A. Williams, JDAileen B. Xenakis, JDAs emergencies consistently overwhelm the resources of the jurisdictions they affect, the emergency management community responds with legislation enacting programs to send aid more efficiently, including the Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC). Correspondingly, emergency management technology develops to meet the field’s evolving needs. The Office of the National Capital Region Coordination (ONCRC) finds that the technology behind First Responder Authentication Credentials, or FRAC cards, will supplement the EMAC program by providing the trust framework that will enable identity and typing to be electronically verified to one individual issued from an authoritative source. It puts ...Read More
The University of Maryland Center for Health and Homeland Security teaches a DHS COOP course at the Maryland Emergency Management Agency (MEMA). First responders from across the state of Maryland attended the course, which was delivered by CHHS Staff Attorney Mike Vesely and CHHS Policy Analyst Eric Oddo from July 21-23, 2009.
CHHS provided COOP (Continuity of Operations) training for first-responders in Los Angeles in August 2008.
Author(s):Jessica P. George, JDJessica L. HurstThis article discusses the paradigm shift that is taking place in emergency management planning with regard to the integration of faith-based organizations in federal, state, and local preparedness, response, and recovery efforts. In addition, this article explores potential legal issues related to government funding and support of faith-based emergency planning initiatives. Finally, the article proposes recommendations for initiating and expanding emergency planning among faith-based organizations to fully utilize the unique knowledge these groups have of the needs of their communities. This article was published in the May/June 2009 issue of the Journal of Emergency ManagementJEM-7-3-01.pdf
Author(s):Whitney Faust, JDMichael Stallings, JDLessons learned and public scrutiny resulting from the Gulf Coast hurricane disasters in 2005 led the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to restructure its national incident response guidance. The National Response Framework (NRF) replaced the National Response Plan (NRP) in early 2008. The updated Framework has focused the attention of emergency management planning to, among other things, updating Emergency Operations Plans (EOPs) on a State and local jurisdictional level, utilizing an Emergency Support Function (ESF) model. Since 2005, compliance mandates under the National Incident Management System (NIMS) have required local government entities to revise and update ...Read More
The State of Maryland’s goal is to implement a comprehensive and effective program to ensure continuity of operations of state and local government under all circumstances. As part of this effort, the Maryland Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) is encouraging all state and local organizations to have in place a viable plan that ensures continuity of operations through a full range of potential emergencies. MEMA, in association with the University of Maryland Center for Health and Homeland Security, has developed this "how-to" manual to assist state and local organizations in enhancing their continuity of operations planning. This manual covers the following ...Read More
Author(s):Adrian Wilairat, JDErin HahnWhen natural disasters such as hurricanes and wildfires approach, one of the emergency response personnel’s primary concerns is ensuring that everyone living within the affected area evacuates efficiently and safely. Emergency personnel are under enormous pressure to move the entire affected population quickly. Recent evacuations have earned media attention because the US Border Patrol conducted immigration status screenings for residents attempting to move to safer areas. These screenings deter portions of the immigrant population from evacuating, hamper evacuation efforts, squander emergency personnel resources, and ultimately endanger rescue workers who return to communities to search for survivors post ...Read More
Author(s):Joshua Easton, JD, MARebecca A. Shore-Suslowitz, JDOrit Zeevi, JDDavid M. McDonough, JDThe Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Grant Program and related homeland security grants managed by other federal departments and agencies are critical to state and local public safety agencies across the nation. State and local agencies use grant funds to purchase terrorism prevention and emergency response equipment, pay training and exercise costs, fund planning activities, and for limited personnel costs. After the initial tide of money was pushed out to state and locals in 2003, the grant application and implementation process has become increasingly complex and time consuming for ...Read More