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Volume 27, Issue 4

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Jon Seals

On Oct. 28, Healthmap.org reported the latest figures on the Ebola outbreak: Spain 1 case; Guinea 1,553 cases and 926 deaths; Sierra Leone 3,896 cases and 1,281 deaths; Liberia 4,665 cases and 2,705 deaths. And for the U.S., 4 cases and one death. The website's Ebola timeline also provides projections on the number of cases and deaths, based on infection rate data from the World Health Organization, a list of the most recent articles about Ebola outbreaks, as well as relevant social media postings.

Healthmap is one example of how easy it is to find information on this rapidly growing epidemic -- and it also represents the way technology can play a major role in the effort to track and control the disease. For example, mobile phones are perhaps the most ubiquitous type of technology available in Africa, used by millions there. So it didn’t take long for researchers to identify the devices as a possible way to not just send people information about the disease, but also to track it.

And with 95.5 percent of the global population having mobile cell subscriptions, call-data records (CDRs) are one way epidemiologists can see where people have been and where they're headed based on past movements.

...

http://www.emergencymgmt.com/health/How-Can-Technology-Fight-Ebola.html

NG9-1-1, Explained: 7 Important "Need to Knows"

Next Generation 9-1-1 (NG9-1-1) is a hot topic in the public safety and local government communities. But the specifics of this long-sought-after initiative can be complex and there are several parties that play important roles. Below is a list of critical elements and key players to help you make sure you’re up to date.

Glossary of Terms:

...

http://www.emergencymgmt.com/next-gen-911/Next-Generation-911-Glossary.html

By Vikram Duvvoori, Chief Technologist and Corporate Vice President - Enterprise Transformation Services, HCL

Vikram DuvvooriIT leaders -- and the executive teams they report to -- have been bombarded with a virtual “shock and awe” campaign around Big Data. IDC estimates that the 1.8 zettabytes —1.8 trillion gigabytes — of information generated in 2011 will grow by a factor of nine over the next five years. Gartner has a similar take when looking at the segment, predicting that the Big Data market, now valued at $5 billion in revenues annually, will explode to $53 billion by 2016.

The initial reaction, and rightfully so, is “Wow!” and “How in the world are we going to deal with all this?”

While considerable attention has been placed on the three Vs of Big Data — volume, velocity, and variety — the most important aspect has been on the back burner: the actual value to the business.

...

http://www.itbusinessedge.com/guest-opinions/deliver-business-value-through-big-data-make-it-small.html

At the 2014 BCI World Conference and Exhibition, participants will have an opportunity to listen to a real case study of the integration of Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) and Business Continuity Management (BCM) as an independent function. This is an innovative and forefront role for the ERM and BCM function.

In my presentation, I will show how the traditional reporting structure and work functions of ERM and BCM in an organisation are usually separated from each other. The ERM and BCM functions are typically part of the executive management team and the head of ERM and BCM reports to the executives such as the CEO or the CFO.

...

http://thebceye.blogspot.com/2014/10/a-case-study-of-integration-of-erm-and.html

HOUSTON, Texas – The Southeast Texas Regional Advisory Council (SETRAC) and the Texas Department of State Health Services are holding the sixth annual Regional Healthcare Preparedness Coalition (RHPC) Symposium on November 5-7, 2014.  The symposium is an opportunity for a national collaboration to discuss new innovations, sharing best practices in emergency preparedness, response and recovery. 

This year’s symposium brings together world renowned doctors, security experts and first responders to share their experiences and lessons learned from the West Africa Ebola crisis, the London Subway bombings and the Washington state landslide.  Keynote speaker Dr. William A. Fischer from Doctors Without Borders will discuss the current Ebola outbreak and his work in West Africa.

Who:     Emergency managers, first responders, healthcare professionals, law enforcement and military officials from all over the world will be in attendance.  Photo and interview opportunities will be available with symposium organizers, participants and guests speakers including:

·        Darrell Pile, Chief Executive Officer, SETRAC

·        Lori Upton, Regional Director of Emergency Management Operations, SETRAC

·        Dr. William A. Fischer, Doctors Without Borders, West Africa Ebola Crisis

·        Nim Kidd, Chief of Texas Division of Emergency Management

·        Brad Reading, Assistant Chief, Snohomish County Fire District 1, Washington Landslide

·        Chris Hawkswell, London Ambulance Services, London Subway Bombings

What:      2014 RHPC Preparedness Symposium

Response assets on display include: ambulance bus, decontamination facilities, mobile medical units, and military and law enforcement vessels.

When:     Wednesday, November 5, 2014

              8:00 a.m. - noon

                       

Where:    Galveston Island Convention Center

  5600 Seawall Boulevard

  Galveston, TX 77551

On-site media point of contact:  Francisco Sánchez, (281) 831-2289.

Click here for additional information on the 2014 Preparedness Symposium.

 

ATLANTA – COOLSHIRT SYSTEMS, International Enviroguard, and Nocturnal Product Development announced a joint venture to produce a new hazardous material suit with built-in cooling: one designed to improve the efficiency of health care workers and to protect them from heat-related risks in treating infectious diseases, such as Ebola.

Typically, workers in HAZMAT suits can only spend limited time caring for patients before heat builds up and forces them to change out of their equipment. This often takes place three-to-four times during a normal shift. Without taking time for breaks, workers face dehydration, heat stress, and loss of focus: critical concerns when caring for patients with dangerous diseases.

The HAZMAT suit will be designed to extend the work period of the caregiver dramatically: from 40 minutes to over 4 hours.

"Our next-generation HAZMAT suit will keep health care workers safer as they treat patients," according to Jay Buckalew, President of COOLSHIRT SYSTEMS. "Our cooling gear will ensure that they are more comfortable, more focused, and better able to do their job while reducing cost and hazardous exposure."

Brian Lyons, VP of Sales and Marketing for International Enviroguard, notes the significant advantages that the new HAZMAT suit will offer. "Caregivers can assist more patients for longer periods of time. There's also a cost-savings for hospitals and government agencies, since they will be able to re-use more of their equipment."

The planned garment will pass ASTM 1670/1671 and be certified to EN14126. It will include a temperature sensor with an alarm, provide fixed or mobile cooling, and allow for decontamination, air-drying, and indefinite re-use.

Planning began after the White House invited COOLSHIRT SYSTEMS and International Enviroguard to participate in a round-table discussion on confronting the Ebola concern. COOLSHIRT SYSTEMS will produce the enhanced undergarment cooling vest. International Enviroguard will design and produce the protective garments, and Nocturnal Product Development will coordinate the project and help in the design, production, and clinical testing of the equipment.

Nocturnal Co-Founder Terry Ransbury says, "We are proud to be part of an innovative venture that will help protect health care workers as they assist those in need." To date, the companies have developed a formal partnership, produced system requirements, and plan to begin prototyping soon. Hospitals and government agencies interested in the protective equipment may contact COOLSHIRT SYSTEMS for details.

About COOLSHIRT SYSTEMS

COOLSHIRT SYSTEMS, LLC is the world's leading provider of cooling garments and systems for physicians, first responders, HAZMAT teams, the military, industrial workers, motorsports, and athletic programs. The company is located outside of Atlanta, Georgia and has been developing and selling personal cooling systems for over 25 years. For more information, please visit www.coolshirt.com.

About International Enviroguard

International Enviroguard, Inc. has been manufacturing and selling personal protective equipment products for more than 20 years. The company is ISO 9001:2000 and CE-certified, allowing products to be accepted and sold globally. International Enviroguard is located in Mesquite, Texas. For more information, please visit www.enviroguardinc.com.

About Nocturnal Product Development

Nocturnal Product Development, LLC designs and develops primarily Class III medical devices. The company is located in the Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. For more information, please visit www.nocturnalPD.com.

NEWARK, Calif. – Tegile Systems, the leading provider of flash-driven storage arrays for databases, virtualized server and virtual desktop environments, today announced that Truck Bodies & Equipment International (TBEI) Inc., a leading manufacturer of truck equipment and accessories, has implemented Tegile hybrid arrays to support its critical operations.

TBEI designs and produces high-quality, precision-engineered equipment under five different brands – Crysteel, Rugby, DuraClass, J-Craft, and Ox Bodies – sold through more than 1,000 distributors and retailers and used by professionals including the U.S. military. The company has around 500 employees located in its Lake Crystal, Minnesota headquarters and plants in Alabama, Mississippi, and North Dakota. Mission-critical applications, including enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, Microsoft SQL Server databases, Microsoft Exchange and a manufacturing control program, required a storage solution that could meet its capacity and performance needs. 

Newly hired IT manager Kurt Weinberg had inherited TBEI’s aging Compellent disk storage system, which was running out of capacity after seven years of service, and he was interested in moving to flash storage. Reseller partner XIOSS highly recommended Tegile Intelligent Flash Arrays, and Weinberg was impressed by the company’s editorial reviews, specs he called “fantastic,” and a cost comparable to Compellent’s for the high performance of flash with the economics of disk storage.

“Tegile delivered on everything that they promised,” said Weinberg. “It’s been a really good experience; We have plenty of room to grow into. When I get my weekly reports, the compression is right as advertised. We have about 3TB of data native, which Tegile is compressing down to 1TB.” 

The migration process smoothed the transition away from disk, toward a flash-centric infrastructure that accelerates ERP, SQL Server, Exchange, and other applications and accommodates Weinberg’s plans for future data growth and additional virtualization. 

“We kept our Dell Compellent up for a week after the migration, then shut it down,” said Weinberg. “Now, it’s out of the rack and out of the building – I’m very happy.”

Tegile’s portfolio of Intelligent Flash Arrays are designed to accelerate a wide variety of enterprise applications – from smaller workloads to mission-critical deployments. They deliver a comprehensive set of data management capabilities while seamlessly supporting different storage media (hard disks, dense flash, high-performance flash) under a single storage operating system. With IntelliFlash, enterprises can deploy all-flash or a mixture of flash and hard disk in a single storage system, and can dial up or down the amount of flash storage needed to meet the specific performance needs of their applications. 

Each array is powered by Tegile’s IntelliFlash™ software architecture, which seamlessly accommodates different storage media and provides advanced data management capabilities for data protection, data reduction and disaster recovery. 

About Tegile Systems
Tegile Systems is pioneering a new generation of intelligent flash arrays that balance performance, capacity, features and price for virtual desktop and database applications. With Tegile’s line of all-flash and hybrid storage arrays, the company is redefining the traditional approach to storage by providing a family of arrays that accelerate business critical enterprise applications and allow customers to significantly consolidate mixed workloads in virtualized environments.
Tegile’s patented IntelliFlash™ technology accelerates performance and enables inline deduplication and compression of data so each array has a usable capacity far greater than its raw capacity. Tegile’s award-winning solutions enable customers to better address the requirements of virtualization, virtual desktop integration and database integration than any other offerings. Featuring both NAS and SAN connectivity, Tegile arrays are easy-to-use, fully redundant and highly scalable. They come complete with built-in snapshot, remote-replication, near-instant recovery, onsite or offsite failover, and VM-aware features. Additional information is available at www.tegile.com. Follow Tegile on Twitter @tegile.
SAN JOSE, Calif. – Skyera Inc., the leader in highest density, all-flash arrays (AFA) that maximize data center efficiency, today introduced its second-generation solid-state array that allows companies to upgrade their legacy storage platform to flash-based storage at the price of traditional spinning disk technology.

Skyera skyHawk FS is purpose-built for high performance and low cost and leverages the most-advanced NAND memory to deliver the highest density, lowest power consumption and flash-optimized software features – all within the industry’s smallest footprint. With 136TB of raw flash in a 1U storage system, the skyHawk FS occupies up to 99 percent less space and consumes as much as 97 percent less power while achieving price points equivalent to traditional enterprise disk storage systems.

“With the increasing volume of data that needs to be stored and analyzed by contemporary enterprise applications, there is an increasing pressure on IT organizations to develop strategies to help them gain the upper hand in effectively and efficiently managing their storage,” said Mark Peters, Senior Analyst at ESG. “Rather than simply deploy more and more traditional equipment into the data center – which uses more power, space, cooling and management – Skyera’s innovative use of flash technology to provide extremes of both capacity and performance can help organizations save on their capital and operational expenditures and positively impact their bottom line.”

Skyera’s unique and groundbreaking approach to flash technology allows enterprises to be smarter about how they satisfy their data demands.  The solution’s small size, weight and power provide measurable OPEX savings while its superior inline hardware-assisted data reduction minimizes storage costs.  Unified SAN and NAS in a single platform provides architecture flexibility. The skyHawk FS is designed to enable high performance and low latency to address a broad range of application workloads, including database, server virtualization and Big Data environments.

skyHawk FS is the densest solution on the market with up to 136TB of raw flash in 1U.  With bandwidth speeds up to 2.4GB/s and up to 400,000 IOPS with microsecond latencies, the skyHawk FS is much faster than disk-based storage solutions.  Skyera’s latest offering supports both iSCSI and NFS protocols and its lightweight design – only 25 pounds – provides unparalleled portability. 

Skyera skyHawk FS incorporates the Skyera Storage Operating System (SeOS), which offers a wide range of capabilities to access, manage and protect data.  The unified all-flash multi-protocol storage solution simplifies storage management infrastructure and minimizes the number of storage systems required, resulting in lower CAPEX and as much as 90%+ reduction in OPEX.  Skyera’s Life Amplification technology extends the projected life of the flash layer by 100 times while proprietary RAID SE technology protects against any flash chip failure within the unit for increased reliability.

“Today’s business conditions demand that enterprises keep their most-important applications running at all times and require that their storage is able to provide the speed and capacity necessary to support these business-critical apps,” said Frankie Roohparvar, CEO of Skyera. “Skyera skyHawk FS has the ability to accelerate even the most-demanding applications while significantly reducing infrastructure costs.  By providing low latency and high transactional throughput, we are able to not only optimize database workloads but also provide dramatically higher performance with fewer bottlenecks for virtualized environments.”

The skyHawk FS is immediately available. For more information or to inquire about purchasing an all-flash array, interested parties can contact an authorized reseller or email sales@skyera.com.

Farmers Insurance and the St. Bernard Project Host Rebuild Event on October 28 and 29 to Help Local Resident Move Back Home Before the Holidays

KEANSBURG, N.J. – The upcoming holiday season presents a series of challenges for thousands of families who are still displaced by Superstorm Sandy. Although two years have passed, many homes are still uninhabitable, and many families continue to move from place to place, often separating their families, just to have a place to sleep.

Farmers Insurance Logo.

Beginning today and continuing for 29 straight hours into tomorrow afternoon, Farmers Insurance and the St. Bernard Project (SBP) will be leading the way home for one more family in Keansburg, N.J. The team will work on the home of Hilton Dantas, completing nearly a weeks' worth of work in only 29 hours. Dantas' home is the 9th home Farmers volunteers have helped complete and the 9th done by SBP in the area.

Since the company's founding 86 years ago, Farmers Insurance has been dedicated to helping the communities in which its employees and agents live and work.  It also believes that helping lead the way back home for families involves three essential elements:  Preparedness, Response and Recovery.  

At its core, Farmers is an organization that believes in smart. It is why the insurer has some of the best trained agents and employees in the industry and why it invests in being prepared as an organization, to deliver for its customers when they are most in need. 

Farmers is also keenly aware that a swift response to a catastrophe will help assure a speedy recovery.  That's why it has teams dedicated to responding quickly and effectively when a disaster occurs.  Its call centers can quickly add staff to ensure customers do not suffer long waits on the phone, while the Mobile Claims Centers are able to quickly establish a front-line presence in areas hit with destruction, providing anyone in the community, customers and non-customers alike, with immediate relief.

And when it comes to recovery, Farmers has always worked one-on-one with customers to ensure families can return home quickly.  Farmers also understands that in addition to individual family recovery, it is important for the community as a whole to recover from a disaster.  That is one reason the Farmers Cares program was developed, to provide assistance to affected communities and to dedicate volunteers and other resources to affect positive change in neighborhoods devastated by natural disasters.

Since May 2013, Farmers Insurance, through its Farmers Cares community program, has been a partner with the St. Bernard Project (SBP) to help families and communities impacted by disasters.  Beginning in Joplin, Mo. in 2013, Farmers and local SBP affiliate, Rebuild Joplin, have partnered to help the town recover from the devastating EF5 tornado that struck the area.  Over the past 17 months, Farmers has provided more than 450 employee and agent volunteers, who have completed more than 16,000 volunteer hours to help rebuild nearly 50 homes.  Additionally, confident that they had garnered some key insights and experience about disaster recovery, Farmers and SBP collaborated to develop the first-of-its-kind Disaster Recovery Playbook which provides key tips and a proven road map that communities can use to recover at an accelerated pace after a local disaster.

Seeing a need in New Jersey and eager to share its local employee and agent talent, its experience in disaster recovery and implementing the insights of the Disaster Recovery Playbook, Farmers again chose to team up with another SBP affiliate, St. Bernard Project New Jersey, earlier this year to help rebuild homes that remain damaged from Superstorm Sandy.  Over the course of the past several months, Farmers volunteers have already helped rebuild more than 100 homes in the Sea Bright area, helping lead the way home for dozens of families in New Jersey.

"Farmers Insurance has a proud heritage of helping families get back home after suffering an unexpected event.  By taking care of customers after they've suffered a loss and helping them put their lives back together, Farmers continues to play a leadership role in helping families and communities recover from devastating events," said Carl Hackling, Head of Exclusive Agent Distribution, East Zone for Farmers Insurance.  "Our work here in New Jersey, in partnership with the St. Bernard Project team, is a continuation of our commitment to the families and communities who need our help."

Farmers believes it has the unique combination of talented people, first-hand experience, technical expertise and a real-world tested recovery playbook to provide the insight and leadership needed to assist communities hard-hit by disasters.

Its work in Joplin, and now in New Jersey, is a clear demonstration of its willingness and ability to help communities ready and willing to recover quickly and effectively following a devastating event.

 

About Farmers Insurance
Farmers Insurance Group of Companies is a leading U.S. insurer group of automobiles, homes and small businesses and also provides a wide range of other insurance and financial services products. Farmers Insurance is proud to serve more than 10 million households with more than 20 million individual policies across all 50 states through the efforts of over 50,000 exclusive and independent agents and approximately 22,000 employees.

For more information about Farmers, visit its Web site at www.farmers.com or at www.Facebook.com/FarmersInsurance.

RockDove Solutions to Focus on Building Enterprise-Class Business Continuity and Emergency Management Mobile Solutions

HERNDON, Va. – To leverage its widespread adoption and market traction, the In Case of Crisis division of Irving Burton Associates today announced its spin off to form RockDove Solutions. The new company is focused exclusively on serving the fast growing enterprise mobile marketplace for business continuity and emergency preparedness solutions. In Case of Crisis, the award-winning emergency preparedness solution, will serve as RockDove Solutions’ flagship solution with future mobile offerings planned to support the expanding needs of companies to better prepare for the unexpected and foster a safer workplace.

Headquartered in Herndon, Va., and carrying forward its existing leadership, RockDove Solutions’ management will consist of CEO and President Anna Ryan and Chief Operating Officer Christopher Britton, formerly General Manager of the In Case of Crisis division, and Ray Baldwin as Chief Technical Officer.

“As In Case of Crisis has gained significant market momentum addressing the growing demand for mobile solutions to support emergency preparedness in education, government and for-profit corporations, Irving Burton Associates’ investors made the decision to spin-off In Case of Crisis to allow for dedicated focus on their respective core offerings,” said Britton. “RockDove Solutions exemplifies the core In Case of Crisis mission to help people navigate to safety during an emergency, much the same way a rock dove has served humankind for thousands of years conveying important information, particularly during a crisis.”

In Case of Crisis’ unprecedented growth, broad market adoption and recent global distribution partnership with Dude Solutions were significant milestones in driving the formation of RockDove Solutions, which is expanding its mobile offerings beyond emergency preparedness into enterprise business continuity and compliance.

RockDove Solutions is a privately held company. The company expects to grow its institutional client base by more than 500% year over year.

 

About RockDove Solutions and In Case of Crisis
RockDove Solutions offers enterprise-class business continuity and emergency management mobile solutions. RockDove Solutions’ flagship product In Case of Crisis is an award-winning mobile solution that helps institutions and their safety professionals’ better care for the well-being of their people by offering easy and secure access to institutional-specific emergency procedures and safety guidelines. The fully secure and customizable mobile solution brings organizations’ unique content to life on the Apple iOS, Android, BlackBerry Passport and Kindle Fire devices. RockDove Solutions is a privately-held company headquartered in Herndon, Va. For more information visit http://www.rockdovesolutions.com.