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News : Health Apr 22, 2014 - 11:44:45 AM

State to Conduct Exercise on Managing Emergency Medications

By The Connecticut Department of Public Health (DPH)

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Hartford, CT - The Connecticut Department of Public Health (DPH), in conjunction with other state partners, will conduct a full-scale exercise to test the state’s ability to obtain emergency medical supplies from the federal Strategic National Stockpile (SNS). The exercise takes place this week.

Managed by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the SNS Program has large quantities of medicine and medical supplies to protect the American public if there is a large-scale health emergency or disaster -- such as a disease outbreak like pandemic flu or a terrorist attack severe enough to cause local supplies to run out.

The program provides an initial delivery of supplies to the state within 12 hours of a request from the state. SNS supplies are stored in strategic locations around the United States to ensure rapid delivery to any location. In Connecticut, the Department of Public Health (DPH) receives the delivery and then arranges for supplies to be transported to the affected areas.

As part of the exercise, DPH will open a warehouse in Bloomfield to receive and deliver
simulated supplies. These supplies will be delivered by truck via a police escort to the warehouse for receipt, storage, and staging of the supplies. The supplies will then be delivered to 75 locations across the state. Locations include schools, local health departments, and public works facilities.

In a real emergency, medications and other supplies would be delivered from these locations to predetermined points of dispensing where people would go to receive required medication. This exercise will not include staging public clinics. Local health departments have held previous exercises to test the process of getting medications to people through mass vaccination clinics.

Agencies and organizations participating in the exercise include the Department of Emergency Management and Homeland Security, the Connecticut Military Department, State Police, Department of Corrections, local health departments and acute care hospitals.

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