Emergency Preparedness

Public Information



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Contact Info...

Winton, NC
(252) 358-7833
P.O. Box 246
801 North King St.
Winton, NC  27986
Fax: (252) 358-7869

Ahoskie, NC
(252) 862-4054
P.O. Box 694
828 South Academy St.
Ahoskie, NC  27910
Fax: (252) 862-4263





The Role of Hertford County Public Health Authority in Emergency Preparedness and Response

1. Serve in the Emergency Operations Center

     The Hertford County Health Director will be       responsible for emergency public health       operations during all disasters.

2. Disaster Epidemiology and Surveillance

     The HCPHA will be monitoring the emergency        room  visits by Hertford County residents to all        hospitals in North Carolina during disasters.        Depending on the specific disaster, monitoring        could include:
        > Determining if there has been an increase in            symptoms from potential bioterrorism agents.
        > Monitoring injuries resulting during or            following a disaster.
        > Monitoring for increases in influenza like            illness symptoms.
     The HCPHA will be monitoring deaths to        determine if there has been an increase as a        result of a disaster.

This information will be shared with the Emergency Operation Center and other pertinent entities for possible action.

3. Outbreak Investigation and Intervention

     The HCPHA Epidemiology Team investigates      and intervenes whenever there is a need to react      to an increase in communicable diseases in the      county. These activities will become the primary      focus of most of the HCPHA staff if a pandemic      influenza or bioterrorism attack with a biological      weapon occurs.

4. Mass Medication Distribution

    All HCPHA staff will be involved in the delivery of     medications, including vaccinations, to the entire     Hertford County population if necessary to prevent     residents from getting sick or reduce the severity     of an illness if they do get sick. Examples would     be vaccinations or anti-viral medications to     prevent or reduce the severity of illness from the     influenza virus responsible for a pandemic flu,     administration of antibiotics or vaccinations if     there is a biological weapons attack or smallpox     vaccines if smallpox is used as a biological     weapon.

5. Food and Water Supply Safety

    The HCPHA Environmental Health Specialists will     be responsible for the following activities during     and following a disaster:
       Coordinating environmental health activities         for waste disposal, refuse, food, water control         and vector/vermin control and sanitation.
       Providing for the monitoring and evaluation of          environmental health hazards and arrange for          corrective measures.
       Inspecting food and water in shelters.
       Assisting the HCPHA Public Information Officer          in developing public education bulletins related          to environmental health safety.

6. Shelter Staffing
    The Hertford County Department of Social      Services is responsible for managing the shelters      at the Hertford County High School and the      Hertford County Middle School when the county      determines they need to be opened. The HCPHA      provides two staff members per 12 hour shift, one      of whom is a public health nurse. These nurses      are there to provide first aide if needed and to      help evaluate, detect, prevent and control      communicable diseases. All residents coming to      a shelter must bring their own medicine and other      medical supplies. A caregiver must accompany      all residents who require a caregiver when at      home.

7. Strategic National Stockpile
    The Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) is      maintained by the Center of Disease Control.      Whenever a large number of residents need      medications and or other medical supplies and      local and regional supplies have all been used or      not available, the SNS will be requested. The      HCPHA health director is responsible for      ordering the SNS through Hertford County      Emergency Management.

8. Public Information
       Before the event the HCPHA is responsible      for providing health promotion, disease      prevention and health protection education to the      public related to all potential disasters on a      continuous basis. The focus is on teaching the      Hertford County residents about steps to take to      prevent illness.
       After the event the HCPHA is responsible      for providing health promotion, disease      prevention and health protection education to the      public specifically related to the disaster with a      focus on public health concerns.

9. Monitor Mortuary Capacity The HCPHA      health  director will coordinate with the Medical      Examiner and other authorities to establish a      temporary morgue, if necessary, during a      disaster event.

10. Disaster Recovery Centers Whenever      possible, the HCPHA will provide a public health      representative at all local disaster recovery      centers that are opened following a disaster      event.


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