Formularies list supplies needed for disasters

The Health Industry Distributors Association (HIDA), the Association for Healthcare Resource & Materials Management (AHRMM), and the Health Industry Group Purchasing Association (HIGPA) have created medical/surgical supply formularies that provide a blueprint for planning and coordinating supplies in the case of a large-scale chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, explosive, or natural disaster.

"When there’s an external disaster, [outpatient surgery providers] are available to the community for supplies and, depending on the situation, personnel," says Marjorie E. Vincent, RN, MBA, CNOR, CASC, principal at Woodrum Ambulatory Systems Development, a Los Angeles-based company that operates, develops, and manages ambulatory care centers.

The formularies focus on adult and pediatric patient needs and provide a targeted supply formulary for each of the events. Same-day surgery providers are likely to have most of these supplies on hand, but there are a few exceptions, Vincent says. For example, the Biological Pack recommendations include a 50 µ mask. "They may not have it, but they would need it, particularly if the disaster was biological," she says.

In the core pack, outpatient surgery providers aren’t likely to have arterial line tubing, a central vein cath kit, or a multilumen central cath kit, she says. However, outpatient surgery departments and surgery centers aren’t likely to need these specific items in a disaster, Vincent says.

For a copy of the supply formularies, visit and search for "formulary disaster." Click on "formularies by disaster.xls."