The Howard County Department of Fire and Rescue Services (HCDFRS) has been awarded a $24,000 grant from the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s (DHMH) Office of Preparedness and Response to enhance Mass Casualty and Infectious Disease Response.
As announced in a HCDFRS news release:
“Making sure that our first responders have the proper protective gear during these large scale and often deadly incidents is critical,” said County Executive Allan H. Kittleman. “We are grateful for the state funding as we work towards the same goal that the Office of Preparedness and Response has, which is to prepare for and respond to significant public health events such as pandemics, natural disasters and acts of terrorism.”
The funds will allow HCDFRS to purchase 50 “go bags” with biological-grade personal protective equipment so that crews can safely suit up during responses to incidents that involve infectious diseases like Ebola, Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) and tuberculosis. Additionally, the grant will allow the department to extend the life-cycle of our mobile oxygen generator. The mobile oxygen generator can be used during large scale incidents where emergency personnel require oxygen for long durations of time, or in the event that power is lost to an existing facility or an off-site portable hospital is set up and needs an alternate source for oxygen supply.
For more information read the full HCDFRS news release.