First responder credentialing and identification system
| 08.23.2006 | 06:18:35 | Views: 3102 | ID:
August 23 '06: An emergency response requires multiple disciplines - everything from water treatment experts to nurses, cyber security specialists, firefighters, police, medical personnel and private sector power company employees. Having proper identification to organize all the various responders is essential for maintaining organization and efficiency during a time of crisis officials in homeland security have said.
Government Computer News reported the Department of Homeland Security is working on a two-tiered credentialing system for first responders using the Federal Emergency Management Agency and its National Incident Management System.The way the credentialing system works is by defining and organizing all responders into categories "such as hazardous-materials firefighters, psychiatric nurses and water rescue specialists," GCN reported. Tom Lockwood, director of DHS' Office of National Capital Region Coordination told GCN, "If the incident commanders asks for [critical care] nurses, and he gets psychiatric nurses or some other personnel other than who is asked for, that is a problem." Having a credentialing system would allow incident commanders and emergency management coordinators allocate and deploy the necessary personnel into the areas most needed. Additionally, "Part of the effort is expanding the definition of an emergency responder to include private-sector workers who can quickly restore power, communications, banking and other critical services." The credentialing system would be supplemented by a national identification card for first responders. Using a national identification card for responders, officials could organize manpower assets in a region, GCN reported. "According to FEMA's Web site, following the categorizing activities, an identity management system might be built that would include a national identification card for emergency responders."
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