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 NATIONAL INCIDENT MANAGEMENT SYSTEM 

           

    The National Incident Management System (NIMS)is a standardized and flexible framework that allows government and private organizations to work together to manage any disaster situation.     By Presidential Directive, the Department of Homeland Security was tasked with the development of a national Incident Management System.  All state and local emergency organizations must adopt NIMS as a condition of Federal preparedness assistance (grants, contracts and other activities) by FY 2005.   All Federal disaster workers, including DMAT and Burn Specialty Team members are required to be trained in NIMS 

    NIMS incorporates many of the concepts of the Incident Command System (ICS) as a 'best practice'.  The Incident Command System was developed by an intra-agency (Federal, State and Local) task force in California, in response to a major wildfire incident in 1970 where 16 lives were lost, 700 structures were destroyed, and over a half-million acres were  burned.   As a result, the Congress mandated that the U.S. Forest Service design a system that would "make a quantum jump in the capabilities of Southern California wildland fire protection agencies to effectively coordinate interagency action and to allocate suppression resources in dynamic, multiple-fire situations."   Varients on the ICS system include the Fireground Command (FGC) system developed by the Phoenix, AZ Fire Department, and the Standard on Emergency Services Incident Management System (NFPA 1561, 2005) developed by the National Fire Protection Association.  

     The model NIMS ICS curriculum organizes four levels of training:
ICS-100, Introduction to ICS; ICS-200, Basic ICS; ICS-300,
Intermediate ICS; and ICS-400, Advanced ICS.  ICS training provided by the Emergency Management Institute, the National Fire Academy, the NWCG, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the U.S. Coast Guard follow this model.  Response personnel previously trained by these agencies do not require retraining to the new standards.

     Why is this important in burn disaster planning?  To effectively write a burn center disaster plan, it is critical to understand the framework in which it will operate.  Familiarity with ICS and the NIMS gives the planner the big picture  and facilitates communication with prehospital, regional and state Office of Emergency Management officials using a common language.

 

    National Incident Management System Resources:   

    

    The NIMS website is located at www.fema.gov/nims

       An on-line ICS Introduction course (IS-700) is available from the FEMA Emergency Management Institute  (link here).  This course can be completed in a few hours.  Anyone involved in disaster planning, including hospital administrators should take this course.   The NIMS introductory course very likely will be a required in FY'06 for state, territorial, tribal and local personnel who have emergency assignments at any level of government.

     Download the NIMS self-study guide here:NIMS-Self-Study Guide.pdf

ICS 100 and ICS 200 level courses are available online thru the FEMA Emergency Management Institute at http://training.fema.gov/EMIWeb/IS/crslist.asp

     

    

Incident Command System 

 

      FEMA on-line Basic ICS Course (IS-195) link 

      FEMA additional ICS Course for Federal Disaster Workers

          (IS-200) link  

 

       The NFPA standard on Emergency Services Incident Management System (NFPA 1561, 2005) can be purchased as a print or downloadable document  from the NFPA website www.nfpa.org

 

 

 

 

        

  

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Last modified: April 04, 2006