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Bureau of Public Health Emergency Preparedness

Crisis Standards of Care (CSC) Project

"Developing a Comprehensive and Compassionate Response"


The Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) worked with public health, emergency management, first responders, healthcare, legal, and other partners to create the Arizona Crisis Standards of Care (CSC) Plan. Ethical considerations and principles have played a key role throughout the course of this initiative. Stewardship of resources, duty to care, soundness, fairness, reciprocity, proportionality, transparency, and accountability are the guiding ethical elements of this plan. This foundation has been integrated into public health and emergency response principles to establish this common framework for statewide CSC.

During a public health disaster, the Statewide Disaster Medical Advisory Committee (SDMAC) will convene to develop incident-specific priorities and guidance for the delivery of healthcare and use of scarce medical resources. This guidance may address:

  • Triage for emergency medical services (EMS),
  • Primary, secondary, and tertiary triage for healthcare facilities,
  • Expanded scopes of practice, as approved by regulatory authorities,
  • Priorities for medical resources including space, staff, and supplies, and
  • Considerations for healthcare access points, including hospitals, out-of-hospital facilities, and alternate care sites.

This collaborative, two-year project included strategic planning sessions, interagency workgroups, and a public engagement campaign. Below is a project timeline highlighting key activities and events undertaken by planning staff and community workgroup participants.

Arizona Crisis Standards of Care Plan – February 2015

Arizona Crisis Standards of Care Plan Development Project Timeline
DateProject Stage
January 24, 2013 Initial Planning Workshop
June 27, 2013 Mid Planning Workshop
July 17, 2013

Clinical Workgroup

Legal/Ethical Workgroup

October 10, 2013 Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Workgroup
October 11, 2013 Clinical Workgroup
November, 2013 - January, 2014

Public Comment and Engagement Meetings-Presentation

AZ CSC In Person PE Sessions Survey-Hard Copy

December 4, 2013 Legal/Ethical Workgroup
January-March, 2014 Online Public Comment and Engagement Survey
February 26, 2014 Final Planning Workshop
May, 2014

Legal and Ethical Review

September 25, 2014 Clinical Proof of Concept Meeting
December, 2014 Plan Finalization
May 19, 2015 Arizona CSC Tabletop Exercise Presentation
CSC Situation Manual

Additional Resources