189825 Community Dispensing Model: Enhancement of county public health medical materiel distribution capability through engagement of local towns and villages

Monday, October 27, 2008

Charles H. Welge, MBA , Albany County Department of Health, Albany, NY
Maribeth Miller, RN, BSN, MS , Albany County Department of Health, Albany, NY
Jeffrey S. Hammond, MBA , Ecology and Environment, Inc., Lancaster, NY
Amy E. Mahl, PhD , Ecology and Environment, Inc., Albany, NY
In conjunction with the federal Cities Readiness Initiative, the Albany County Department of Health (ACDOH) has implemented a unique planning process with local municipalities to enhance its capabilities for distribution and dispensing of Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) assets. ACDOH seeks unique approaches to develop capabilities in response to aggressive federal, state and county goals for prophylaxis of the County population following a bioterrorism incident, and further recognizes these capabilities could be leveraged during other types of public health emergencies. This approach recognizes successful development and implementation of distribution plans relies on strong partnerships with County municipalities. Such partnerships are critical to sharing information and resources; and local municipalities have an intimate knowledge of their communities' resources and needs to drive specific planning and response elements. ACDOH, in consultation with public health emergency management specialists from Ecology and Environment, Inc, therefore developed and implemented a planning approach to assist county municipalities in developing customized distribution plans that would best serve their population. The approach included phased efforts starting with an introductory meeting with the County Executive and municipal leaders to engage support for the project; then a data collection process using a pre-developed template; followed by individual on-site consultation with municipalities to assess proposed Points of Dispensing (POD) sites for appropriateness. Finally, the municipality-specific information, including demographics, maps, resources, resource needs, critical infrastructure and personnel, and POD site information was compiled to create customized Community Distribution Plans that described the process by which community prophylaxis could occur primarily using local resources.

Learning Objectives:
1. Recognize the organizational challenges of engaging local communities in county-wide medical dispensing. 2. Identify and list critical resources maintained by local municipalities that could be leveraged and augment County resources for enhancing medical materiel distribution. 3) Using lessons-learned from Albany County's planning experience, develop a realistic planning approach consistent with local resources and constraints create county-specific Community Distribution Plans within eight months.

Keywords: Community Health Planning, Partnerships

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have robust academic training in health sciences that has been implemented in eight years experience providing public health consulting expertise to state and local health departments across the country in numerous states including New York, Oregon, and Lousiana. Projects have included planning, training and exercises. I have led the current project over the past two years, working in close partnership Albany County Department of Health staff and County municipalities to enhance public health preparedness and therefore have an in-depth understanding of the approach taken.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.