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Keene State's Safety Center Trains Medical Personnel From New Hampshire Hospitals

KEENE, N.H. 4/11/05 - How do hospital personnel learn to protect themselves and others when caring for patients injured and contaminated during a chemical agent release, sickened by biological agents such as anthrax, or feverish from a virulent flu outbreak? Keene State College’s Safety Center in Manchester is preparing first receiver trainers from New Hampshire hospitals in decontamination techniques in the event of natural or manmade disasters. “First receivers” are healthcare workers at a hospital who receive contaminated victims, and must decontaminate victims to prevent contamination of hospital personnel and facilities.

The first class of 25 participants completed their training in March, and two more training sessions are scheduled April 11-15 and April 25-29 at the Keene State College Safety Center in Manchester, N.H. The Safety Center is also home to the New England OSHA Training Institute Education Center (Region I), a collaborative partnership with the U.S. Department of Labor - Occupational Safety and Health Administration and Keene State College.

Upon completion of this intensive five-day training program entitled “Hospital First Receiver Management Train-the-Trainer,” participants will be able to return to their hospitals to train fellow personnel how to respond to an emergency that brings victims to their facility. Course material is based on OSHA Best Practices for Hospital-Based First Receivers of Victims. Development of this course was a collaboration between Keene State College, the New Hampshire Hospital Association (NHHA), and the Center for Public Health Preparedness at the Mailman School of Public Health of Columbia University. NHHA sponsored this course entirely through a grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Nurses attending this course will receive continuing education credit courtesy of Southern N.H. Area Health Education Center.

“There are many training programs out there, but this collaboration has provided a customized content to meet the needs of our hospitals here in New Hampshire,” said Deborah Yeager, Director of Hospital Preparedness for the New Hampshire Hospital Association.

The program runs from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Each day is jam packed with information included in seven courses that lead to a Hospital First Receiver Management Training-the-Trainer certificate. Courses range from hazard communication to respiratory protection and decontamination training.

For more information about the Hospital First Receiver Management Training- the-Trainer certificate, contact Dolores Price at the Keene State College Safety Center by phone at 800-449-6742 or by e-mail at

NOTE TO MEDIA: Participants will be learning decontamination procedures on Friday, April 29, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Keene State College Safety Center, 175 Ammon Drive, at the Manchester (NH) airport. The participants wearing respirators and Level C suits (made with chemical resistant fabric) will be learning to care for patients using volunteers acting as if injured. If you are interested in covering this training for a news article or photograph, please contact Dolores Price or Kathie Sperry at the Keene State College Safety Center: 603-645-0050 or 800-449-6742.

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Contact Keene State College

229 Main Street
Keene, New Hampshire 03435