November-December 2013
Volume 94, Number 6

Today, as the number and intensity of disasters mount, hospital leaders are compelled to assess potential hazards based on location and assess each facility's ability to function should disaster strike.

The effect of flooding on Mercy Medical Center in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, was totally unexpected, given the hospital's distance from the river. Yet, preplanning allowed the hospital to safely evacuate its 183 patients when rising water turned it into a disaster victim.

Catholic Charities of Baton Rouge, La., has become so adept at rapidly transforming itself from a general human services agency to a disaster response and recovery organization that it often deploys teams to other areas to offer support.

The nation's 2.4 million people living in special residences for the elderly are especially vulnerable during disasters. Critical questions in disaster planning include how to ensure that these residences are not only well prepared themselves, but are also tightly integrated into community planning.

Resource allocation and treatment decisions are likely to be among the first ethical challenges in a disaster, and fairness demands that we get them right.

CHA presents its executive summary of its 2013 Mission Leader Survey.

Recent controversy about POLST – Physician Order for Life-Sustaining Treatment – offers an opportunity for Catholic health care ethicists to refocus the conversation to the most important issue: the place of advance care planning in Catholic health care.

There's more to formation than checking boxes to denote completion of various components.  Formation entails a passive as well as an active element, and parts of it are beyond an individual's control.