Emergency Preparedness: What we learned from Specialist Alex Quintela, Fannie Mae

Recently on the Videocast of University of Applied Research & Development Emergency Response & Risk Management, we were glad to interview Alex Quintela, Emergency Preparedness Specialist. In this article we’ll be summarizing his take on emergency preparedness, role of technology and advice from professionals.

Current Role

Alex describes his current role as an emergency preparedness specialist as a tough job during the ongoing Covid-19 crisis. As we are all aware of the fact that medical professionals are on the front line in battling this pandemic, he said that the company values the safety of its employees above everything else. Risk management plays a key role in Alex’s work since his work is based completely on medical assistance.

Alex discussed how important it is for him to make a difference in the current situation. His job requires constant interaction with professionals of other fields. Alex prioritized ethics in dealing with the people during the current pandemic until medical science makes a breakthrough.


Alex’s interaction with international medical professionals opened his mind on how the situation can be dealt with in different aspects. His network plays a major role in his experience. Most of the experience one gets is by learning and exchanging ideas from other personnel. Being a part of a team, itself makes quite an impact on one’s experience. Sharing experiences in conferences and meetings has helped Alex a lot with his work in the medical industry. Law and policy changes are made through the help of these medical advisors. Especially during the lockdown, when almost all commercial activities have been given a halt to stop the spread of Covid-19.


Awareness and preparedness for situations like the one currently should be common in communities throughout the world. Alex discussed ways to strengthen the trust between health workers and the people. Since medical professionals are our only guidance through this crisis, we are to stay alert and prepared for everything in this pandemic. Alex believes one of the most effective ways to fight this is to being prepared and that can only be done through awareness. He stated that it has been a priority for health workers to guide the masses through media platforms.

Photo by Hush Naidoo on Unsplash

Simulations & Role of Technology

Simulations in the medical field play a significant role especially in emergency preparedness and risk management. Alex stated that these simulations can be quite effective if done properly despite the cost. Reacting to basic emergency situations is something everyone should know how to do. On the subject of technological advancements, Alex revealed how far his profession has progressed. From video conference calls to remote based consultation, technology in the medical field has come a long way too. Social media itself has made collaborating with other workers a trouble-free experience. Even in the current situation mobile applications for the sole purpose of tackling crisis are being developed. However, there can be some cons of technological advancements. Alex believes that risk management comes in the picture here as well. Depending entirely on technology without having any manual assistance can be a problem too.

Career Advice

A successful career in emergency preparedness management requires a lot of traits. One of the main quality Alex thinks is the ability to communicate whether it is your colleagues or a patient. Working as a team and collaborating holds great importance in the medical line. People that are not used to engaging much with others might find this difficult but gradually anyone can learn to be more interactive. Alex’s response to what he would advice to someone who is looking to get in the same line of work as him was that the industry surely needs new sets of energized eyes and hardworking youngsters that are willing to make a difference in the world.

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Watch the interview on our Youtube channel:
-recovery and response
-crisis management and communications
communication in disaster management
 emergency preparedness
 disaster management
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