Winter Blast to feature credential demo

About 200 emergency medical personnel will flash a temporary federal credential in the Homeland Security Department's Winter Blast disaster drill tomorrow in the Washington, D.C., region.

The project is one of several demonstrations of the First Responder Authentication Credential being developed by DHS' Office of National Capital Region Coordination. Also participating are the Federal Emergency Management Agency and Pentagon Force Protection Agency.

The credentialing solution, made by CoreStreet Ltd. of Cambridge, Mass., is compatible with Federal Information Processing Standard 201, CoreStreet said in a news release.

CoreStreet's software for handheld devices and related back-end servers will manage the credential validation and privilege attribution for the participants, the company said. The software enables officials to control access to a disaster scene by quickly authenticating and validating roles and identities of the medical volunteers.

In Winter Blast, the medical responders will demonstrate operation of the National Response Framework for medical mutual aid. This includes the Emergency System for Advanced Registration of Volunteer Health Professionals, in which Federal Information Processing Standard 201 compliant credentials will be issued and verified.

"Securing the perimeter in the wake of a disaster can be a daunting task, particularly when it comes to ensuring only authorized health care personnel have access to the site," said Chris Broderick, chief executive officer of CoreStreet.

The CoreStreet solution also was part of the previous Winter Storm and Summer Breeze demonstrations of DHS' first-responder credential.

Also participating in the event are the Women in Military Service for America Memorial, Arlington, Va.; Veterans Affairs and George Washington University hospitals, both in Washington; Temple University Hospital and Crozer-Chester Medical Center in Philadelphia; and the Southwest Texas Regional Advisory Council in San Antonio.

About the Author

Alice Lipowicz is a staff writer covering government 2.0, homeland security and other IT policies for Federal Computer Week.

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