(Accomac, Va.) On Tuesday, October 18th, the staffs of the Eastern Shore Health District (ESHD) and Eastern Shore Rural Health (ESRH) exercised emergency preparedness plans at the Franktown Community Health Center in Franktown, Virginia. Using a scenario endorsed by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), 120 workers from both of the organizations, as well as Star Transit and volunteers from Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT) and Eastern Shore Medical Reserve Corp (ESMRC) rehearsed the opening of a Neighborhood Emergency Help Center (NEHC) where they practiced dispensing preventive medications to the exposed.
The Eastern Shore Health District has partnered with Eastern Shore Rural Health since 2004 and exercised mass dispensing annually at community health centers located strategically throughout the Eastern Shore in order to be best prepared to handle a “mass exposure to a biological weapon” type of event that might require a large number of people to seek treatment in a limited window of time. In a real event medications will arrive to the Eastern Shore from the United States Strategic National Stockpile which must be dispensed to all who need it within 48 hours, according to the plan. Evaluators from both organizations provide suggestions for improvement and all participants are encouraged to provide feedback in order to improve the process at each location.
For more information about Emergency Preparedness on the Eastern Shore visit http://www.vdh.virginia.gov/LHD/EasternShore/EPRPrograms.htm
For More Information Contact:
Keith Privett, Environmental Health Supervisor
JJ Justis, Local Health Emergency Coordinator