Officials from Sampson County Schools recently received an update regarding the use of facilities during emergency situations.
Lou Nelon, director of Auxiliary Services for Sampson County Schools, recently addressed the Sampson County Board of Education on a state requirement calling for the school system to be used as a Closed Point of Distribution (POD) Partner for emergencies such as disease breakout. A part of the process is delivering medical supplies to residents within a 48-hour period.
“Probably the best example of that would be an anthrax vaccine,” he said. “That’s one that’s been around for quite a while. There’s not enough anthrax vaccine sitting around in any hospital in the country. It’s kept in a stockpile and will be sent.”
Sampson County officials will have to come up with a plan and location for materials to be brought in. Nelon said an exercise was held in the summer at a local high school. Now the the county is moving to the next step, by developing plans.
He added there are two types of pod sites available — open and closed. The closed pod includes a system where emergency officials or organizations dispense to staff, family members and patients. Nelon said the school system is also a part of that option.
“Organizationally, it’s not very difficult for us to be able to do that,” Nelon said about the closed option.
The open is placed in a particular area for the entire community to use. Going forward, Nelon said they have to notify officials about being classified as a closed pod.
“The bottom line for us is that it means that our part of the population would be taken care of quickly,” Nelon said about staff members and their families. “Then those folks can be available for whatever assistance that we can provide.”
Potential district locations have not been determined yet, but one idea is to have a northern and southern location in Sampson County.
Reach Chase Jordan at 910-249-4617. Follow us on Twitter at @SampsonInd and like us on Facebook.