Get Ready: Bakersfield hospital prepared for disaster

Get Ready: Bakersfield hospital prepared for disaster »Play Video
Bakersfield Memorial Hospital is seen in an August 2012 photo from its Facebook page.

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) — A major disaster could mean thousands of casualties. So are our local hospitals ready to respond?

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"What you're doing is controlling chaos," said John Rogers, the nursing manager at the Memorial Hospital's emergency department. "You want to make sure that everyone that comes through this door for help gets the best care possible."

Rogers said the hardest thing the hospital does is prepare for mass casualties - multiple patients, multiple injuries, all at once.

Memorial Hospital also holds annual training days to make sure every employee is at their best when things get their worst. Sabrina Welch-Sanchez participated in two safety drills, one practicing how to use a fire extinguisher, another teaching how to get patients out of the hospital if elevators are unavailable.

"The hospital is really working hard to help us take care of our patients in a time of emergency," said Welch-Sanchez.

What if something happened at the hospital? In the event of a disaster everything can be mobilized.

At Memorial, there are two trailers full of county equipment, including IVs, cots, blood monitors, and all kinds of medical services.

"In the event of a natural disaster, that equipment is here," said Shad Reeves, the safety and security director at Memorial.

"We would be able to get to it and use it to assist us in taking care of our community," said Reeves. "It's important for the people at home to know we do have tools in place and the equipment to take care of people, take care of their families, their loved ones while they're inside our hospital."