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Project Manager : Project Manager Feb March 2012
20 Project Manager IN 2002, THE ROYAL PERTH HOSPITAL BURNS UNIT TOOK ON 15 PER CENT OF ITS ANNUAL WORKLOAD IN ONE DAY – THE DAY OF THE BALI BOMBINGS. TEN YEARS ON, DR FIONA WOOD CREDITS PREPARATION FOR HER DISASTER MANAGEMENT SUCCESS. B Y DEFINITION, disaster is when routine ser vices are overwhelmed, explains Dr Fiona Wood AM. The key to project management in a disaster, then, is being prepared for anything and training for every scenario. Regardless of the type of disaster, you need resources – human resources and equipment – saidDrWood. She cited an increasing understanding since the late 1990s of the importance of having thought through solutions to potential problems before they occur, leading to a greater appreciation for training – preparing human resources to manage disaster is now considered just as important as ensuring supply of physical resources. In their 1999 study of the community response to Canada’s 1997 Red River Flood – which despite major flood protection measures in the region saw 28,000 locals evacuated and CA$500 million in damage – Jerry Buckland and Matiur Rahman found that communities in Manitoba with better physical and human resources responded more effectively to the disaster. Following the 2002 Bali bombings, the Royal Perth Hospital Burns Unit, headed up by Dr Wood, took on 15 per cent of its annual workload in just one day. The unit received and treated 28 of the disaster ’s worst burns victims, winning worldwide acclaim for its successes. Dr Wood credited the success of the team to preparing resources in advance. “ Training is extraordinarily important in all walks of life,” she said. “That was ver y obvious on the day of the Bali bombings, when 50 per cent of respondents had gone through scenario-based training to prepare for disaster.” Project: training Many in Dr Wood’s team had been repeatedly placed in situations – albeit hypothetical – where resources were overwhelmed and action had to be taken immediately. They were forced to make decisions, adapt to changing circumstances and basically get on with the job as if it were routine. “We allknowhow to dobest what we do every day,” she said. “So if we can put strategies in place to do more of what we ( • COVER STORY BY HALLIE DONKIN MATCH FIT?
Project Manager Dec Jan 2012
Project Manager April May 2012