When disaster strikes it is critical that Public Health is prepared to respond quickly and effectively. To launch this type of response, Public Health has developed emergency response plans. With trained staff and volunteers, we regularly put those plans into action during exercises and actual situations.
During an emergency, Public Health may open temporary medication centers, also called Points of Dispensing (PODs) to quickly provide medications or vaccinations to the public. Public Health works with school districts and other organizations to identify facilities that can be used as POD sites.
If your organization is interested in helping dispense emergency medications to your clients, employees and employees’ families, please join our regional Push Partner Registry. Large businesses and agencies serving people who might have difficulty getting to a POD are especially encouraged to sign up.
The Region IV Public Health Mass Prophylaxis Point of Dispensing (POD) Field Operations Guides (FOGs) provide guidance on how to operate and staff a POD. There are two Region IV PH POD FOGs:
- POD Operations Overview, POD Set-up and Staffing (Nov. 2012); (PDF)
- Inclusive Just-in-Time Training Guide and POD Job Action Sheets (Nov. 2012). (PDF)
For more information about planning related to PODs, contact Maria Maribona at (360) 397-8009 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Emergency response plan
Public Health’s emergency response plan (PDF) describes how we will respond to public health emergencies in our communities. In addition, Public Health, with other emergency response partners, helps organizations, businesses, schools and others develop response plans specific to their needs.
Public Health’s Community-wide Pandemic Influenza Plan is coordinated with federal efforts led by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and state efforts led by Washington State Department of Health.
Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan (CEMP)
Public Health works with Clark Regional Emergency Services Agency (CRESA) to make sure that the county’s response plan is well coordinated with the emergency plans for other agencies and organizations in our community. CRESA maintains the CEMP which delegates emergency management responsibilities among county agencies and their partners.
Emergency response teams
Public Health has three trained emergency response teams that assess the emergency situation and initiate activities to resolve any health threats.
Incident Management Team
Works with the public health director to develop response priorities and provide structure for the public health response.
Region IV Epidemiologic Response Team
Conducts rapid assessment and epidemiologic investigations in the early stages of a potential public health event.
Point of Dispensing (POD) Team
Establishes temporary, emergency medication centers to provide medication to large groups of people.
Learn more about Public Health's emergency response teams (PDF).
Public Health participates in regular emergency exercises to practice our response plans before a real disaster strikes. To learn more about emergency exercises contact Rich Konrad at (360) 397-8462 or email@example.com.
Training emergency responders
Public Health works with healthcare providers and hospitals to make sure that emergency responders have the skills they need to do their job.