Today was a day focused on emergency preparedness. At work, a colleague who is an emergency preparedness consultant went with me to three town schools in order to survey the buildings' potential to serve as Emergency Dispensing Sites (EDS).
An EDS is a facility designated to be the operations center wherein a town accesses emergency medications from the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS), a national repository of medications designed for a swift response to terrorism, epidemics, and other public health emergencies. The EDS can be a school, a community center or any building that can accommodate large crowds as they're shepherded through for triage and treatment in an orderly manner.
It was an eye-opening experience, and I came away with a much more robust understanding of what it means to set up an EDS in my town, and which buildings are more appropriate that others.
This evening, following a long day of work, I attended a training on Psychological First Aid, a key to helping people in the immediate aftermath of various types of disaster.
My baptism into the world of emergency preparedness continues, and it will only become deeper as I delve further into my (seemingly growing) responsibilities.