Nicollet County Public Health works with community partners to prepare for public health disasters. Of the many lessons learned during our planning and disaster preparedness exercises, the most important is that it will take the entire community working together to respond to any public health emergency involving a serious infectious disease such as a pandemic influenza event.
During a Public Health Emergency
During a public health emergency it is anticipated that there will be workforce shortages that will seriously jeopardize public health's ability to respond effectively. It is anticipated that 30-40% of public health staff will be unavailable because either a staff member or a family member has been exposed or is ill.
Staff from the medical clinics, hospitals, or pharmacies would also have equally stressful challenges in continuing operations during a public health emergency. Since every county in Minnesota will be dealing with similar workforce shortages, assistance from outside the county will not be available either.