Going Above and Beyond During Alaska Earthquake
By Medline Newsroom Staff | December 4, 2018
Amy Jeter was huddled in a doorway with an operating room manager, as violent tremors rattled a hospital in Anchorage, Alaska Friday from a 7.0 magnitude earthquake. Jeter, a Medline sales representative, was with customers during the terrifying moments. The quake damaged roads and buildings and left many without power. It also forced hospitals and Medline to execute on their disaster preparedness plans.
“It was amazing to witness the entire hospital staff react,” says Jeter. People were even stuck in elevators, but it was so impressive because it was like watching a well-orchestrated dance.”
Jeter also jumped into action. She walked around to staff to see if they needed anything, and at one point worked with Medline’s local distribution center to pull an emergency order of surgical packs and supplies to drive to a healthcare facility.
Brook Predeger, another Medline sales representative, was driving to a customer when the ground started shaking.
“It felt like I was in a movie, like Jurassic Park where one of the dinosaurs smashes into the side of the car and knocks it around,” Predeger described. He said for about 30 seconds, the city lights went out. Predeger said he also stepped in to help with cleaning when he arrived at one healthcare facility. Back at home, Predeger returned to broken glass and items tossed around from the tremors.
At the distribution center, where Jeter’s husband works, Medline’s Emergency Response Team responded to calls and worked alongside hospitals, physicians’ offices, nursing homes and even hospice providers to ensure they had the supplies they needed to care for their patients.
“Emergencies can happen anytime and anywhere. Medline has plans in place for different disaster or emergency situations so that we can serve our customers who can continue delivering the best care to their patients,” said Bill Abington, executive vice president of operations, Medline. “As soon as the earthquake occurred, Ken Jeter, branch manager and Brandon Reeder, our vice president of operations West Coast, immediately contacted me and all other members of our Disaster Response Team.”
Abington said the DRT followed the written protocol which included a series of calls to assess the needs of both our Anchorage distribution center and team members. The plan also called for the immediate mobilization of an operations team from Medline’s Portland and Seattle distribution centers to go support the Anchorage team.
“Through quick action our distribution center was up and running and picking orders on the weekend,” said Abington.
Medline has 15 team members in Alaska, who have been accounted for and are safe.