The Licking County Health Department (LCHD) has a Preparedness Team operating under a grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) called Public Health Emergency Preparedness (PHEP). The primary focus under PHEP for local health departments is to plan and activate a point of dispensing (POD) to provide medical countermeasures (MCMs) to the population.
Our Preparedness Team plans for a variety of scenarios and different POD structures to best serve the community. PODs can be designed to dispense medications through general walk-in clinics, drive-thru settings, and closed PODs where individuals can pick up medications for others. LCHD is also in the process of obtaining a mobile clinic which will allow staff to travel out in the community to offer services to individuals who cannot reach any of our POD sites.
In addition, our Preparedness Team provides support to community partners. We work closely with the Licking County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) and our Public Information Officer (PIO) provides communications during events for both LCHD and EMA. We also provide staff assistance for different emergency shelters to provide basic medical care and support shelter operations.
The LCHD Preparedness Team continues to plan and evaluate community needs as our population grows. Emerging issues are being addressed with members of our healthcare coalition and shape our department’s preparedness objectives.