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DMEP Course

Disaster Management and Emergency Preparedness Course (DMEP)

Developed by the Ad Hoc Committee on Disaster and Mass Casualty Management Committee on Trauma, American College of Surgeons.  Course emphasizes an all-hazards approach, emphasizing that many principles apply to disasters of all kinds regardless of specific mechanism. Surgical problems and the role of surgeons in disasters are emphasized even with non-surgical forms of injury.

Course Description

DMEP is a one-day course that is both didactic and interactive. It addresses core competencies as outlined by the American College of Surgeons (ACS) Committee on Trauma (COT) Disaster and Mass Casualty Management Committee. Major topics addressed include planning, triage, incident command, injury patterns and pathophysiology, and consideration for special populations. Small group discussions are based on illustrative scenarios. The course requires a pre and post test, which are reviewed onsite. A comprehensive syllabus and supportive CD with resource material is provided.

Target Audience

The intended audience includes acute care providers (i.e., surgeons; anesthesiologist; emergency medicine physicians; ER, OR, ICU and trauma nurses; and pre-hospital professionals) who will most likely be the first receivers of casualties following major disasters. Other health care providers, administrators, public health personnel, and emergency managers are also encouraged to attend.


  • Understand the surgical problems, injury patterns, and issues that may result from disasters.
  • Discuss the role that surgeons can play in planning for and responding to mass casualty incidents and disasters, especially at a hospital level.
  • Become familiar with the terms and concepts of incident command.
  • Understand the principles and challenges of disaster triage.
  • Become familiar with treatment principles related to blast injury, chemical attacks and radiologicaldispersal devices.
  • Know the civilian and military assets available for support.

Core Competencies

  • epidemiology and history of disasters
  • disaster planning
  • disaster response organization and execution
  • medical management of mass casualties
  • pathophysiology and patterns of injury
  • post-disaster assessment and recovery
  • pitfalls and barriers in disaster planning and response
  • understanding the needs of special populations (ie, pediatric, geriatric, disabled)


The American College of Surgeons is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

CME Credit

The American College of Surgeons designates this educational activity for a maximum of 8.25 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.


For the purposes of recertification, the American Nurses Credentialing Center accepts AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ issued by organizations accredited by the ACCME.