Disaster Medical Assistance Team (DMAT MA-2)
For information about the DMAT MA-2 team or team sponsorship, please contact:
Gina Smith, RN
Commander, DMAT MA-2
Department of Emergency Medicine
University of Massachusetts Medical School
55 Lake Avenue, North
Worcester, MA 01655
Telephone: (508) 334-7322FAX: (508) 856-6902http://www.dmatma2.com
The National Disaster Medical System
When a disaster strikes -- such as earthquake, fire, flood or tornado -- The National Disaster Medical System (NDMS), a federal agency created in the early 1980's, may deploy Disaster Medical Assistance Teams (DMATs) from various regions to aid in the disaster relief effort. The NDMS is a joint effort from the Department of Health and Human Services, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Department of Defense and the Department of Veteran's Affairs.
Disaster Medical Assistance Teams
A Disaster Medical Assistance Team (DMAT) is a volunteer group of medical and paramedical professionals who have prepared themselves to assemble rapidly as a self sufficient medical unit. This group of individuals is trained, skilled, equipped and capable of mobilization and deployment to any destination wihin 24 hours of notification.
The basic unit of a DMAT is the patient care nucleus. Composed of physicians, nurses, rescue and support staff, this grouping provides both acute emergency and primary care to an affected population. Team members are trained to deliver medical and surgical care, and to stabilize victims at a disaster site until they can be evacuated to a receiving hospital. A DMAT is also equipped to provide primary care services in cases where communities may have lost their health care facilities. All individual DMAT members serve on a volunteer basis, bringing with them skills they practice in their daily work.
A DMAT may be deployed to meet regional disasters, nationwide disasters requiring several teams present at the disaster sites, and international disasters in nations requesting assistance from the United States.
The MA-2 DMAT Team
Established in 1990, the University of Massachusetts Medical Schools's DMAT, federally designated as "MA-2", is a major component of the National Disaster Medical System. MA-2 is one of 20 Level I rapid deployment DMAT teams in the country. With volunteers from all of the major healthcare systems in Worcester as well as other areas of the Northeast, the team was deployed for joint training during the 1992 Sail Boston Tall Ships event and provided 3 on-site medical stations for the over 2 million spectators that visited the harbor during the week-long event.
The team was officially activated during the fall of 1992 and deployed 2 teams during Hurricane Andrew, including a Management Support Unist (MSU), which provide support to other DMAT teams in the field. The DMAT MA-2 not only staffed established medical sites, but provided community outreach to those who were unable to reach the established sites. Since that time the team has been one of the most active in the country with deployments including the Olympic Games in Atlanta, GA, ice storms in upper New York state, and hurricane relief in St Croix.
During the blizzard of 1992, DMAT members provided local assistance by helping to staff emergency shelters in Worcester. The team is also available to provide medical coverage to large scale public events in the region.
The UMassMemorial DMAT Team provided services at Ground Zero after September 11 and most recently has deployed several times for service during the Hurricanes Katrina and Rita disasters.
For further information see our web site:
Disaster Medical Assistance Team sponsorship is available to individuals or companies. No administrative fees are deducted from donated monies, which means that 100 percent of your donated funds are used to support the DMAT program. Donations are tax deductible to the extent of the law.