The Public Health Emergency Preparedness and Response program at Eastern Idaho Public Health was established in 2002 to prepare individuals, families and communities in Bonneville, Clark, Custer, Fremont, Jefferson, Lemhi, Madison, and Teton counties to respond to and recover from threats and emergencies. The public health consequences of disasters and emergencies can significantly affect local people and communities. Stakeholders must be prepared to coordinate, cooperate, and collaborate with cross-sector partners and organizations when emergencies occur, regardless of the type, scale, or severity.
Eastern Idaho Public Health’s Emergency Operations Plan utilizes the Public Health Preparedness Capabilities to advance local health system emergency preparedness and response capacity. The capabilities identify priority resource elements that are relevant to both routine public health activities and essential public health services. This supports an “everyday use” model in which applying the capabilities to improve day-to-day effectiveness builds a stronger foundation from which Eastern Idaho Public Health can surge when an emergency incident occurs. Eastern Idaho Public Health tests and evaluates emergency preparedness and response capacity through exercises, planned events, and real incident responses.
Eastern Idaho Healthcare Coalition
The Eastern Idaho Healthcare Coalition combines hospitals, emergency medical services, emergency management, public health, skilled nursing, long-term care facilities, mental health professionals, public safety, schools, volunteer agencies, and others to build medical surge capabilities and capacities among Eastern Idaho healthcare entities to respond to bioterrorism, infectious disease outbreaks, natural or man-made disasters, and other public health threats and emergencies. The Eastern Idaho Healthcare Coalition plans, trains, and exercises together to improve the ability of regional healthcare systems to respond and recover from a medical surge event.
Eastern Idaho Medical Reserve Corps
The Eastern Idaho Medical Reserve Corps allows local medical and non-medical volunteers to contribute their skills and expertise during times of community need. Having citizens who are prepared to take care of themselves, their families, and others during times of crisis allows first-responders to focus their efforts on the most critical, life-threatening situations. An organized, well trained Medical Reserve Corps unit means that volunteers can effectively respond to an emergency, are familiar with their community’s response plan, know what materials are available for their use, know who their partners in the response are, and know where their skills can be utilized to their best advantage and in a coordinated manner.
Eastern Idaho Medical Reserve Corps volunteers include medical and public health professionals such as physicians, nurses, pharmacists, dentists, veterinarians, and epidemiologists. Other community members, such as interpreters, chaplains, office workers, and legal advisors, fill other vital support positions. You need not have a medical background to volunteer and function in many support roles.
It is easy to register to become an Eastern Idaho Medical Reserve Corps member, through the Volunteer Idaho system. This system enables Eastern Idaho Public Health to verify the professional credentials of volunteers. If you do not have a professional license, you are still very important to the Eastern Idaho Medical Reserve Corps. Volunteer Idaho enables Eastern Idaho Public Health to keep your information and deployment status readily available.