Minnesota Hospital Association

Quality & Patient Safety

Emergency Preparedness

Minnesota’s health care coalitions

MHA partners with the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) to administer the Healthcare Preparedness Program (HPP) grant. These federal funds are provided to health care coalitions to help them prepare for and respond to disasters and emergencies.

Minnesota recognized the need for better coordination among health care, public health, emergency medical services and other key emergency response partners. In response, the state formed eight regional multidisciplinary planning and response groups called health care coalitions. These are groups of health care, public safety and public health partners that join forces for the common cause of making their communities safer, healthier and more resilient.

Find out more about resources, programs, coalition membership and contact information on the MDH website.

Emergency overhead pages

Variations in overhead paging in hospitals can cause confusion among caregivers, staff and patients and lead to adverse patient safety events. A survey conducted by MHA found 22 different codes for patient abduction and 18 different codes for a security alert. Code green indicated four different emergencies and code yellow had five meanings. This can be particularly troublesome for health care professionals who work in more than one hospital.

Minnesota hospitals are striving to implement plain language for overhead codes and many hospitals are minimizing overhead pages by communicating in other ways. MHA, with input from emergency professionals and hospital preparedness coordinators, developed an Emergency Overhead Paging toolkit to help hospitals use plain language in pages and determine which emergency situations need to be communicated to all patients and staff.

Download the emergency overhead paging toolkit:

emergency overhead paging toolkit