Every disaster begins on a local level and may, depending on size, evolve to a state of federal disaster response. Understanding California's State Disaster Plan and the importance of the chain of communication is a first step to understanding the Federal Disaster Response system. The chain of command is critical to making sure services and resources are utilized in a timely manner without duplication.PURPOSE
This paper's intent is to define California's present emergency management system (EMS) infrastructure from local to state level and educate healthcare professionals for disaster activation.CONCLUSIONS
It is imperative that all voluntary healthcare professionals learn the chain of command within the disaster response system. Each disaster response begins with the individual's preparedness at the local level and all disaster preparedness must incorporate training of health professionals, citizens, and families in local disaster drills.