HOSA members prepare for emergencies Students who attend the CERT program become certified in emergency response

The annual Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program was held on Sept. 23 -24 to teach Future Health Professionals (HOSA) members on emergency preparedness.

CERT is part of our competition for HOSA as well as a skill that health care professionals need to know,” HOSA adviser Vicki Smith said. “It is also a requirement for our MRC [Medical Reserve Corps].” 

The training teaches HOSA members how to help people in case of disaster. If the students pass the test at the end of the program they are then certified as CERT and are able to assist during emergencies when professionals are not readily available.

“This program gives an opportunity to help people and communities to be prepared for an emergency,” HOSA photographer Brittny Mikhaiel said. “This can relate to anyone, young or old, in school or out of school, even people who have no interest in the medical field. Having knowledge and being prepared for an emergency to help yourself and others is something that will benefit everyone.”

HOSA members will be able to use these learned skills at their state competition in Reno on March 19-22.

“CERT is supported under a grant from Homeland Security and the City of Las Vegas to train a second line of defense in emergencies,” Smith said.

The program started after the  National Terrorism Act was passed. Its purpose is to give normal citizens a chance to be able to help out in times of emergencies.

“There are community programs available for any other students who would like to take this course,” Smith said. “They can go to the CERT website for Las Vegas and sign up and attend. Students also move to the adult team upon graduation.”

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