The National Preparedness Leadership Initiative brought its seventh delegation of officials from the United States to visit their peers in Israel in January 2013. Each delegation is designed to address issues related to mass casualty events and population resilience. It is hosted and organized by the Emergency and Disaster Management Division of the Israel Ministry of Health.
“We are profoundly grateful to our colleagues in Israel for sharing their knowledge, particularly at the Ministry of Health,” said NPLI founding co-director Leonard Marcus. “The best practices and lessons learned are helping inform policy and practice in the United States.”
Participants in the 2013 delegation came from the American Red Cross, the CDC, FEMA, the National Counterterrorism Center, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the Office of Personnel Management, San Francisco’s Office of Emergency Management, the U.S. Army, and U.S. Northern Command.
The delegation met with the Ministry of Health, the Homeland Defense Ministry (pictured above), a Community Resilience Center, and representatives of the National Trauma Registry among others. Insights were shared from Israel’s missions to Haiti and Fukushima, Japan as well as recent conflicts. Practice highlights included a toxicological event drill at Assaf Harofeh Hospital, a field medical training exercise with the Home Front Command, and a dialog with members of the Israel Trauma Competition.
“The delegation is a unique opportunity to engage in frank discussions and learn the challenges of leading a population under threat,” said Marcus. “In turn, our Israeli colleagues tell us that they learn from the provocative questions posed by the delegation.”
One delegate called the delegation “very informative and thought-provoking.” Another said that, “I learned a great deal and established some wonderful new networking contacts.” A third said it was an “outstanding experience.”
“This delegation builds long-term relationships both among the delegates and with their peers in Israel,” said Marcus. “The dividends are ongoing.”
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