Title: The role of communication in healthcare systems and community resilience

Authors: Brooke Fisher Liu; Brooke M. Fowler; Holly A. Roberts; Elizabeth L. Petrun Sayers; Michael J. Egnoto

Addresses: Department of Communication, University of Maryland, 4300 Chapel Drive, College Park, MD 20740, USA; Risk Communication and Resilience Program, National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism, 8400 Baltimore Ave, Suite 250, College Park, MD 20740, USA ' Department of Communication, University of Maryland, 4300 Chapel Drive, College Park, MD 20740, USA ' Risk Communication and Resilience Program, National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism, 8400 Baltimore Ave, Suite 250, College Park, MD 20740, USA ' Behavioral and Policy Sciences Department, RAND Corporation, 1200 South Hayes St., Arlington, VA 22202, USA ' First-Year Innovation & Research Experience, University of Maryland, 8400 Baltimore Ave, Suite 250, College Park, MD 20740, USA

Abstract: Communication failures often contribute to emergency medicine breakdowns during crises like Ebola, Superstorm Sandy, and 9/11. For example, the misidentification of Ebola in Dallas in 2015 was blamed on ineffective communication between hospital departments and ineffective hospital communication systems. Yet, existing research rarely examines how communication breakdowns can contribute to such failures. This paper provides a systematic research review to introduce emergency medicine providers to research-based best practices in risk and crisis communication. This paper also extends these best practices based on the unique healthcare system context. Understanding these best practices can improve how emergency medicine providers prepare for and respond to crises. In addition, awareness of critical research gaps such as message crafting techniques, family communication, and empowering nurses can inform strategic priorities for mitigating common communication failure points.

Keywords: crisis communication; disaster communication; emergency medicine; health communication; hospitals; risk communication.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEM.2017.087218

International Journal of Emergency Management, 2017 Vol.13 No.4, pp.305 - 327

Available online: 08 Sep 2017 *

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