Santa Cruz County residents can rest assured that training for readiness of public health emergencies is being addressed by medical-health responders in our community. Disease outbreaks such as Measles, Hepatitis A, and H1N1 Influenza have swept across the nation creating a need for mass medication and distribution to the public. Recently, public health professionals, law enforcement officers, and emergency medical responders gathered together at Cabrillo College to train and plan for an event that requires a mass distribution of medication.
The course was provided by Texas A&M Engineering Extension Services (TEEX) to local and regional partners from Santa Cruz, Marin, San Benito, San Francisco, and San Mateo counties. Partners from the California Department of Public Health and the California Office of Emergency Services (CAL OES) also participated in the two-day training. “It was a great opportunity to partner with the County of Santa Cruz and work with the local teams in building our partnerships for emergency response,” said Charlotte Girroco, California Department of Public Health, Medical Countermeasures Coordinator.
Participants gained skills on how to efficiently complete a request for mass medications and set-up staff dispensing sites at community facilities. In the event of the need for mass distribution of medication, Santa Cruz County Public Health will partner with established medical-health providers, County departments, local government and community volunteers to provide medication and health education when needed.
Santa Cruz County Emergency Preparedness Manager, Kathleen Conley, stated “Santa Cruz County Public Health Emergency Preparedness was delighted to bring local and regional partners from several medical-health disciplines together to train and prepare for all-hazards prevention and response to disease outbreaks. We appreciate that TEEX was able to provide this valuable training at no cost to the local community.” Trainings such as this assist in preparing public health staff to be ready to deploy and meet the needs of the local community.
For more information on emergency preparedness visit: www.santacruzhealth.org/emergencyplan