ChesterCountyMedicine Spring 2018 - 20

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Emergency Preparedness is a Team Effort
continued from page 19
PODs have well-established plans and pre-established core leadership
teams. All of the Delaware County PODs have conducted a fullscale exercise within the last 5 years, as have most of the Chester
County PODs. The Open PODs are scaled to serve 20-40,000
people in 48 hours. Effective operation of a POD requires a pretrained core team and about 60-75 total staff per shift. Most staff for
the open PODs will be volunteers from the host site, Medical Reserve
Corps (MRC) volunteers, and only a few county or commonwealth
government staff. In the event of an SNS emergency and Open
POD activation(s), the public would be notified via traditional media
(radio, TV) and via social media (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) where they
should go, how to get there, what to bring, and what to expect in the
process.
Closed Points of Dispensing (Closed PODs) - Closed PODs
(formerly known as "Push Sites") are locations such as nursing
homes, long term care facilities, government sites, critical
infrastructure sites, and businesses that have completed an agreement
with the county to serve as a dispensing point for their pre-defined
population. Unlike Open PODs the general public is NOT able
to get their mediations at a Closed POD. Typically Closed PODs
provide medications to their residents or patients, all of their staff
and employees, and in most cases, to family members of staff and
employees. Closed PODs are a critically important part of the
county programs because the decentralize the dispensing and every
person who is served via a Closed POD represents one less vehicle
trying to make it to and one less person to be standing in the long
lines at an Open POD. Both counties have great Closed POD
programs with about 35% of population coverage in Delaware
County and nearly 50% coverage in Chester County! These are two
of the best programs in the Commonwealth and the nation!
Hospitals - Hospitals serve key functions in the SNS/MCM
program, but they are NOT a place we want the general public to
go to get their live-saving medications! The hospitals must remain
capable of serving as medical treatment facilities! All hospitals in
the both counties participate in the SNS/MCM program in two
key ways. First, each hospital serves as a dispensing location for first
responders (Fire, Police, and EMS) in the pre-defined area around
each hospital. Second, each hospital serves as a Closed POD and
provides medications to their patients, their staff, and to family
members of staff. Finally, all hospitals will likely be in a "medical
surge" operational mode to treat both normal sickness and illness as
well as those who may be sick from the contagion.
Local Distribution Site (LDS) - the key logistics element in each of
the county programs is known as the Local Distribution Site (LDS).
Formerly known as Local Logistics Nodes, the LDSs are sites that
receive bulk distribution of medications (and in some cases other
equipment and supplies) from the Commonwealth RSS. The staff
at the LDSs reconfigure the medications for delivery to Open PODs

20 CHESTER COUNT Y Medicine | SPRING 2018


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