The Yankton County Emergency Management Office (YCEMO) wants you to know about some of its programs, and some of those programs need volunteers. Currently, YCEMO is looking for POD, or Point of Dispensing (POD), help.

POD is a group of volunteers who get together to help prepare and exercise in case there is a disaster that involves dispensing prophylactic medications. Point of Dispensing (POD) is a federally instituted best practice model designed to provide medications, vaccines, or medical supplies to a large community of healthy people during a health emergency. POD sites will be activated in order to provide medication and/or medical supplies to the healthy community prior to the onset of illness in order to decrease illness and prevent death.

POD sites are locations that are both familiar and easily accessible to the community (i.e. schools, community centers, churches, etc.) and are designed to serve as a place for the public to come and receive their medications, vaccines, or medical supplies. The ultimate goal of a POD is to quickly provide these items to a large number of people in a short period of time.

Yankton and Bon Homme counties have a total of roughly 30,000 citizens. If called upon, POD would organize within 24 hours and be ready to help citizens receive medications, vaccines or medical supplies, all within a 48 hour period. It’s a big undertaking but one that is critical to the health and safety of all of us.

POD isn’t all about giving immunizations or medications though. YCEMO is in need of people to help with planning, resources, security or finance items. You don’t have to be an expert; YCEMO will provide you with the training you need. If you have experience and skills that you think could help us, then YCEMO would love to talk to you about opportunities to be of service through POD. YCEMO members do meet quarterly and exercise annually. Exercising gives members the opportunity to practice and sharpen their skills. If you have an interest in helping out in your community, this may be the group for you.

If you have questions or want more information, contact the Office of Emergency Management at 605-668-5289.

Be sure to follow YCEMO on Facebook #YanktonCountyEmergencyManagement or on Twitter @YanktonCoEM.

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