6-2 Milestone Three: Crisis Communication Plan


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In this milestone, you will submit the crisis communication plan. You will outline the training needs of the clinical and nonclinical staff, explaining how you will develop trainings to meet these needs. You will also outline the key people in the incident command, describe their key roles and responsibilities, and explain how this command will ensure all stakeholders stay informed.

To complete this assignment, review the following documents:


It is crucial to determine the clinical and non-clinical staff’s training needs to ensure the seamless running of Shoreline Health System during downtimes. There are several training needs for clinical staff.  Clinical staff should be instructed on efficiently using toolkits for downtime documentation. These resource packages are essential for gathering pertinent data during unanticipated downtimes and avoiding information gaps. Also, training sessions are essential to make sure that communication channels are properly used, facilitating effective information flow between various departments.

Additionally, clinical staff should receive training on how to communicate non-diagnostic information to other departments in an efficient manner, as this is crucial for preserving coordination and continuity of treatment during downtime. To ensure that clinical staff members have the knowledge and ability to record patient information in such circumstances appropriately, it is equally crucial to provide clinical documentation training during planned and unforeseen downtimes (Amatayakul, 2017). Additionally, instruction should be given on finding essential healthcare information from alternative sources since conventional electronic media records might not be accessible during outages. Another crucial need is having the technical team engage with the clinical staff to decide the best time to schedule downtimes. Teamwork is essential to minimize interference with patient care and ensure that downtimes are planned and carried out in the least disruptive way to clinical operations.

Regarding the non-clinical staff, several training needs should be addressed to ensure the smooth running of the healthcare enterprise. Firstly, downtime drills should be carried out during several shifts as a practical approach to crisis training. Both clinical and non-clinical employees can gain practical experience from these drills and become better equipped to handle scenarios that may arise during downtime. Besides, training on an incident command structure with a clear outline is critical to avoid information gaps and promote effective coordination during downtimes (Djalali et al., 2014). Non-clinical staff should receive training on downtime documentation toolkits like the clinical staff. These toolkits are crucial for obtaining pertinent data during unanticipated downtimes and avoiding information gaps. Additionally, non-clinical staff need to be trained in efficient communication methods to guarantee a seamless and effective flow of information across various departments.

Lastly, frontline doctors and non-clinical personnel should receive contingency plan training to prepare for unforeseen events. Through this training, they will be better equipped to react to unforeseen circumstances and maintain patient care during downtime. Shoreline Health System can improve its clinical and non-clinical staff members’ readiness and capacity to manage downtime circumstances by attending to these training requirements, thereby enhancing patient safety and the efficient operation of the healthcare institution.

Clinical staff needs training on effectively using toolkits for downtime documentation, documenting clinical work during downtimes, and finding vital clinical information from other sources. Also, training is required to ensure accurate and thorough recording and information retrieval to maintain patient care standards. On the other hand, the training requirements for non-clinical workers emphasize the incident command structure, proper downtime recording tools use, communication channels, and general preparedness for unforeseen events. These training requirements aim to establish a seamless information flow, coordinate activities, and guarantee operational continuity during downtime. Clinical and non-clinical staff need the training to use downtime documentation toolkits effectively, but different issues need to be covered for each group. The incident command structure and general preparation must be covered in training for non-clinical staff, whereas clinical staff must get training in clinical record keeping and accessing vital clinical information.

The clinical staff at Shoreline Health System require several training approaches to efficiently train on meeting various needs. First, the clinical staff will be exposed to simulated scenarios called scenario-based training that imitate scheduled or unplanned downtimes as part of one approach (Walsh et al., 2020). Role-playing exercises or virtual simulations are ways of achieving this kind of training. Also, clinical staff can practice clinical recording, put their training to use in real-world circumstances, and learn how to find crucial information from additional sources by participating in these scenarios. This method allows clinical staff to acquire the abilities and information to manage downtime scenarios successfully.

Additionally, regular use of downtime drills is another crucial training approach. These exercises are crucial for ensuring that all parties, including the clinical team, are educated, and kept up to date on the precise downtime protocols and the realities of a crisis. The team can practice and improve communication strategies by simulating downtime scenarios during various shifts, ensuring that the chosen channels efficiently facilitate information flow (Dunlap & Ellerbe, 2016). Downtime drills also allow the billing team to get billing information from the clinical staff and manually document it during downtime to maintain business operations.

The clinical staff also needs hands-on workshops as another training approach. These are interactive sessions/workshops that provide attendees with the chance to participate actively. Clinical staff practice using downtime documentation toolkits through group exercises, case studies, and simulations. By actively practicing throughout these courses, the clinical team will receive practical expertise in recording pertinent information during downtimes. With this strategy, staff members can better use the documentation toolkits when faced with downtime since they can learn by doing.

Some training strategies will be used at Shoreline Health System to meet the training needs of the non-clinical staff. Downtime drills are one such approach. These activities test how well the backup plans and downtime procedures work. The personnel can test and improve their comprehension of the downtime procedures by completing these drills (Walsh et al., 2020). Additionally, they will receive instructions on manually scanning paper documents and saving the results in a secure location. Through this training, the non-clinical employees will be prepared to handle downtime circumstances and be able to access vital information in the future, supporting the continuity of operations.

Training in communication skills is another crucial component of non-clinical personnel training. Effective communication is essential to maintain efficient and smooth information flow across various departments during downtimes. Through this training, Staff members will learn active listening, accurate message delivery, and communication approaches (Dunlap & Ellerbe, 2016). The non-clinical staff can communicate non-diagnostic information to other departments accurately and efficiently if their communication skills are improved. This approach will make coordinating and maintaining operations during downtimes easier, ensuring that crucial information is efficiently communicated.

The incident command team at Shoreline Health System consists of key employees assigned to specific command roles. The Chief Executive Officer assumes the role of the incident commander, responsible for the overall coordination and management of the incident response. They communicate with stakeholders and external agencies, allocate resources, and ensure effective utilization. Besides, the HIM Director is the liaison officer responsible for information control and assisting individuals and organizations involved in the emergency response (Djalali et al., 2014). The Risk Management Officer acts as the safety officer, monitoring, assessing, and managing the risks associated with managing the incident.

The Public Relations Manager takes on the role of the public information officer, responsible for communicating with other agencies, the media, and stakeholders. They also act as a liaison between the organization and the public. Also, the Operations Manager serves as the operations section chief, managing and coordinating operational actions and implementing the incident response strategy. The Director of Supply Chain assumes the role of the logistics section chief, responsible for providing all necessary logistics functions, such as moving communication channels, medical care, food, supplies, and other essential resources during an emergency.

Additionally, the Chief Nursing Officer takes on the role of the planning section chief, collecting and analyzing information about the incident and developing and maintaining the incident action plan (Djalali et al., 2014). Finally, the Chief Financial Officer assumes the finance/administration section chief’s role, managing the incident response’s financial aspects, including tracking costs, expenses, and reimbursements.

Designating distinct roles and duties to diverse stakeholders is crucial for effective coordination during downtimes. The technical staff should notify all interested parties before any planned downtimes. This aspect enables individuals to prepare psychologically and physically for the impending emergency. The technical team should also consult the clinical staff to decide the best time to schedule the downtimes. The billing staff should open clear contact lines with the healthcare team to collect and record charge information during operational downtime (Amatayakul, 2017). Additionally, to handle technical issues as soon as possible during unforeseen downtimes, the technical staff department should keep good lines of communication open with system providers.




Amatayakul, M. (2017). Health it and ears: Principles and practice. American Health Information Management Association.

Djalali, A., Carenzo, L., Ragazzoni, L., Azzaretto, M., Petrino, R., Della Corte, F., & Ingrassia, P. L. (2014). Does hospital disaster preparedness predict response performance during a full-scale exercise? A pilot study. Prehospital and Disaster Medicine, 29(5), 441–447. https://doi.org/10.1017/s1049023x1400082x

Dunlap, N. E., Ellerbe, S. (2016). An organizational approach to downtime readiness. Journal of Healthcare Management, 61(2):116-131.

Walsh, J. M., Borycki, E. M., & Kushniruk, A. W. (2020). Effects of electronic medical record downtime on patient safety, downtime mitigation, and downtime plans. International Journal of Extreme Automation and Connectivity in Healthcare, 2(1), 161–186. https://doi.org/10.4018/ijeach.2020010110.