Public health emergencies can be any disaster or crisis that can harm the health of people living in communities throughout Philadelphia. PDPH works every day to make sure Philadelphia is prepared for any kind of public health emergency. Our plans involve partners at the local, state, and federal levels.
Planning for Emergencies
A public health emergency can happen at any time. That is why it is important to be prepared. Below, we have included planning templates for healthcare, businesses, schools, and tips for personal preparedness.
The following health hazards have the potential for major public health impact and may require special action for public health preparedness.
Outbreaks and Emerging Infectious Diseases
During a public health emergency, such as Hurricane Katrina or 9/11, people often ask, “How can I help?” Apply your skills where they are needed most, and volunteer with the Philadelphia Medical Reserve Corps (MRC)! The Philadelphia MRC is a committed group of volunteers who help keep Philadelphia safe by responding to public health emergencies. Volunteers are trained in advance, so you will be better prepared to help yourself and others during an emergency. The MRC offers training opportunities where medical professionals can earn free continuing education credits.
Click here to learn more about the Philadelphia MRC
To apply to volunteer with the Philadelphia MRC:
- Click here to go to the ServPA website
- Then click the "Register Now" button
- For the organization selection, choose "Add Organization" "Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) Organizations" "Philadelphia MRC"
- Complete the rest of the form and submit
The Philadelphia Department of Public Health coordinates with federal, state, local, and regional agencies to plan for and respond to public health emergencies. Response partners include hospitals, universities, law enforcement, long term care facilities, local businesses, community based organizations, etc.
The Philadelphia Department of Public Health maintains the secure, password protected webpages below on the Philadelphia Department of Public Health’s Health Information Portal (HIP) to facilitate coordination with response partners. Authorization to access these sites must be approved by the Philadelphia Department of Public Health’s Bioterrorism and Public Health Preparedness Program.
PDPH regularly exercises, or tests, our plans to make sure they will work in an emergency. These exercises range from small-scale radio tests to large-scale activities involving many partners taking place over the course of a week and testing many different plans at once. After the exercise, we review how well the plan worked, produce an After Action Report to document our findings and areas for improvement, and update our plans.
Healthcare and other planning partners that have been involved in PDPH exercises can obtain a copy of the After Action Report through a secure, password protected site
Closed POD Partners
Closed PODs are private locations such as businesses, universities, or nursing homes where mass countermeasures can be dispensed to a specific group of people. For information on becoming a Closed POD, please contact ClosedPOD@phila.gov.
Current Closed POD Partners can maintain their contact information and access planning templates