Emergency Preparedness

Public Health Educators partner with Emergency Management and other community partners to prepare for all-hazard response and recovery. The Emergency Preparedness Coordinator is responsible to fulfill grant duties established by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and are governed by the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH). Preparedness includes planning, training, evaluating, and exercising; this is done with local and regional partners. Carlton County Public Health and Human Services plans for response and recovery involving the health of the people.

Plans

Plans include, but are not limited to, mass care/sheltering, medical countermeasure dispensing, and isolation & quarantine.  To carry out response and recovery activities, the coordinator relies on volunteers to supplement the workforce to fill needed roles.  MN Responds Medical Reserve Corps is one available option for members of the community to become active volunteers in public health emergencies.  To find out more, or to register, please visit the following website: https://www.mnresponds.org/.

Emergency Response

County and Tribal Public Health Departments, along with northeastern hospitals, clinics, local emergency planners, EMS, Red Cross, law enforcement, military and human services departments have planned and trained for their responses to emergency situations. This joint planning will help result in fast, coordinated responses in case of bioterrorism, chemical emergencies or radiation terrorism.

These agencies have:
•Recruited pharmacists, medical personnel and volunteers.
•Prepared to receive and distribute federal emergency stockpiles of medical supplies within 12 hours.
•Planned and practiced for the mass distribution of medicines or other treatments.
•Planned responses for chemical releases or accidental spills.
•Prepared to communicate through the media, so residents will know what actions to take.
•Prepared emergency personnel to treat injuries from explosions and evaluate radiation releases.

Examples of the Different Kinds of Terrorism or Emergencies
Bioterrorism such as:
•Anthrax
•Plague
•Smallpox

Infectious disease emergencies such as:
•Avian flu
•Bacterial meningitis
•SARS-like illness

Food borne illness emergencies such as:
•Botulism
•Salmonella

Chemical emergencies such as:
•Benzene spill
•Sarin gas release

Explosions such as:
•Natural gas or
•Terrorism related

Radiation emergencies such as:
•"Dirty bomb" - an explosion that releases radioactive material which was stored within the bomb.

Natural disasters such as:
•Blizzards
•Floods
•Ice storms
•Lightning storms
•Tornadoes
•Wildfires
•Wind storms

In case of an emergency event, always listen to your local radio or television station for advice on appropriate actions for you and your family.

Prepare your family: assembling a family emergency plan and having a kit of supplies available are important steps to take to ensuring your ability to respond and cope with an emergency disaster if one occurs.  The Minnesota Department of Health, Office of Emergency Preparedness has resources on their website.  

In Carlton County there is a mass notification system for emergencies called Carlton County Emergency Alert Program.  A person can create their own password protected profile and enter the preferred contact methods to receive alerts about weather emergencies or other emergencies.  The link is available on the Carlton County Homepage under Helpful Links.