Journal Article Questions Whether Open PODs Are Enough - Bio-Defense Network
Apr 2015

Journal Article Questions Whether Open PODs Are Enough

A paper published in March in the journal Health Security reported on a study conducted by Saint Louis University which questions whether plans by local health departments to use Open Points of Dispensing will succeed in a crisis.

The paper reported findings from a survey of more than 600 planners from local public health departments around the nation, and was titled “Are U.S. Jurisdictions Prepared to Dispense Medical Countermeasures Though Open Points of Dispensing?”

In short, the answer was “Yeah, but.”

While almost all respondents said they believed their current plan to distribute life-saving medications through their network of Open PODs, fewer than half reported they had adequate staff or volunteers to successfully operate those Open PODs.  So in more than half the cases, the plans are there, but the people are not.

This means that in the event of a bio-terrorism attack, in many communities, local public health departments will not be able to fully activate and operate the number of Open PODs they need, and residents likely will go un-protected.

Bio-Defense Network has been a proponent and supporter of Closed POD networks for years, and continues to believe in the wisdom of recruiting businesses, academic institutions and other organizations to serve as Closed POD hosts.  The more people are covered by Closed PODs, the fewer staff and volunteers will be needed to operate Open PODs.  Lives will be saved.

(Full disclosure: Bio-Defense Network co-founders Harlan Dolgin and David Reddick supported this research project by reviewing the survey questions in advance, providing counsel to the research

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *