VHHA Hosts Hundreds of Attendees for the 2023 Virginia Healthcare Emergency Preparedness Summit in Richmond

April 18, 2023

 ‘Accelerating Preparedness for Tomorrow’s Threats’ is the Theme for the Summit that Brings Together Key Stakeholders from Virginia and Beyond to Network, Collaborate, and Share Best Practices in Emergency Response Planning

RICHMOND, VA – Having come through a global pandemic and other serious public health challenges in recent years, emergency management professionals have been battle tested by real world experience. This week, emergency preparedness officials from Virginia and beyond are coming together to network and share lessons learned during the 2023 Virginia Healthcare Emergency Preparedness Summit, whose theme is “Accelerating Preparedness for Tomorrow’s Threats.”

Presented by the Virginia Hospital & Healthcare Association (VHHA) and the Virginia Healthcare Emergency Management Program, the Summit is being held today (Wednesday, April 19) at The Westin Richmond. The event brings together more than 300 people for educational programming, keynote remarks, and breakout sessions featuring renowned speakers and leaders with experience and subject matter expertise in responding to mass casualty events, biopreparedness, addressing the medical needs of displaced refugee populations, post-pandemic supply chain management, incident response team development, health care emergency planning, and the role of the regulatory process during disaster situations.

Featured Summit speakers include Todd Sklamberg, Chief Executive Officer of Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center, Nevada’s largest acute care facility, for his observations as a health care leader involved in the response to the 2017 mass shooting in Las Vegas, NV; and Syra Madad, DHSC, MSc, MCP, CHEP, a public health leader and epidemiologist in infectious disease and special pathogens preparedness and response who serves as Senior Director of the Special Pathogens Program at NYC Health + Hospitals and Co-Principal Investigator at the Institute for Diseases and Disaster Management, who will discuss the importance of biopreparedness.

Other speakers and panelists include leaders from HCA Healthcare, Inova Health System, Mary Washington Healthcare, the Northern Virginia Emergency Response System, Owens & Minor, Sentara Healthcare, the Virginia Department of Emergency Management, the Virginia Department of Health, and VHHA.

The Summit is one example of the way Virginia’s public health and emergency management stakeholders collaborate to maintain Virginia’s high level of preparation for public health emergencies, which has been recognized several times in recent years. The latest report by Trust for America’s Health, Ready or Not 2023: Protecting the Public’s Health from Diseases, Disasters and Bioterrorism, again places Virginia in the top tier of states. The report measures state levels of preparedness to respond to a wide range of health emergencies including infectious outbreaks, natural disasters, and manmade events. Previous annual reports from Trust for America’s Health – including those compiled during the lengthy response to the COVID-19 pandemic – also ranked Virginia in the top tier of states in 2022, 2021, and 2020. Virginia has also been ranked among the top states in the National Health Security Preparedness Index (NHPSI) report that evaluates state readiness to respond to public health emergencies.

“While the past several years have undoubtedly been challenging, we have emerged from them with the knowledge, experience, and resolve to fortify our response efforts for the next large scale public health situation that confronts us,” said Matthew Marry, VHHA Director of Emergency Preparedness. “Our partnership as health care organizations, government agencies, and private sector entities with a common goal of planning for future emergencies is an asset, and this Summit is just one example of our dedication to that work.”

“Emergency planning and preparation are vital to safeguarding public health. Virginia is proud to be a state recognized for strong performance in national emergency readiness rankings from the Trust for America’s Health and the National Health Security Preparedness Index,” added VHHA President and CEO, Sean T. Connaughton. “That recognition is the product of focus and intentional work by many of the colleagues and collaborators joining us at the Summit, which offers an opportunity to acknowledge where we’ve been and to steel ourselves against future threats to the health and safety of Virginians.”

VHHA extends its gratitude to program participants and speakers as well as the following sponsors whose support helps make the 2023 Virginia Healthcare Emergency Preparedness Summit possible:

  • Gold Sponsors: Carter Machinery, Motorola Healthcare Solutions, Pulsara, and WestPrime Healthcare;
  • Silver Sponsors: 3M, Ethos Preparedness, Foster Fuels, Regulus Global; and
  • Bronze Sponsors: Aramsco, the Language Group, and the Northern Virginia Emergency Response System.

About VHHA: The Virginia Hospital & Healthcare Association is an alliance of 110 hospitals and 25 health delivery systems that develops and advocates for sound health care policy in the Commonwealth. Its vision is through collaboration with members and stakeholders, to ensure the sustainability of Virginia health care system, transform the delivery of care to promote lower costs and high value across the continuum of care, and to improve health for all Virginians. Connect with VHHA through Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, and Instagram.


Julian Walker
Vice President of Communications
(804) 297-3193 office
(804) 304-7402 mobile