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In-Home Strategic National Stockpile Dispensing by Means of Home Health Agencies: An Alternative Means of Dispensing to Vulnerable Populations

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  27 November 2019

Charleen McNeill*
Affiliation:
Assistant Professor, East Carolina University, College of Nursing, Greenville, North Carolina
Ashlea Bennett Milburn
Affiliation:
Associate Professor, Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, Arizona
*
Correspondence and reprint requests to Charleen McNeill, East Carolina University, College of Nursing, 4165H Health Sciences Building, Greenville, NC 27858 (email: mcneillch18@ecu.edu).

Abstract

The Federal Emergency Management Agency prescribes a 48-h timeline between the declaration of an emergency and the treatment of the last person with Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) medical countermeasures (MCM). Many states struggle to meet the 48-h window. Issues surrounding adequate staffing, critical to maintaining necessary Points Of Dispensing (POD) throughput, are noted in the literature. The use of public and private partnerships in the health-care sector may improve POD throughput. This study describes a novel strategy for partnering with home health agencies (HHAs) to augment MCM distribution. The HHA In-Home Dispensing Model we propose authorizes HHAs to act as Closed PODs following a head of household model. Here, we evaluate the effectiveness of the model using a case study. First, we provide an overview of the methods used to estimate the duration of in-home nurse dispensing shifts. We then present the results for our case study area. Next, we discuss how the model can be used and its limitations. We conclude that the HHA In-Home SNS Dispensing Model shows promise and should receive further consideration, as it can decrease demand at open PODs and increase the reach of MCMs to vulnerable populations who might otherwise have difficulty receiving them.

Type
Concepts in Disaster Medicine
Copyright
Copyright © 2019 Society for Disaster Medicine and Public Health, Inc.

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