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P003: Epidemiology and Response Division (FY17-FY19 Strategic Plan)

P003: Percent of the NM population served by methods other than open points of dispensing (POD) for antibiotics and/or vaccinations in the event of a public health emergency

Current Value


FY 2017


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Story Behind the Curve

  • The Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Reauthorization Act (PAHPRA) emphasizes that pandemic influenza response is a public health responsibility.
  • The 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic caused an estimated 270,000 hospitalizations and 12,270 deaths in the U.S. between April 2009 and March 2010.
  • Staff in the public health regions continue collecting information regarding the identification and development of closed POD partnerships, including the number of people to be served. These ‘closed’ venues exist within public and private partnerships formed with NMDOH and are called closed points of dispensation (PODs).
  • The New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH) Epidemiology and Response Division Bureau of Health Emergency Management staff have engaged in seeking support for mass dispensing from commercial pharmacies within the state. These partnerships will conceivably assist with the administration of medical countermeasures to the public and serve as PODs for the provision of medical countermeasures to their own staff and family members. It is not possible to gauge the increase in the population served by these partnerships until more planning has been accomplished.


  • Kirtland Air Force Base (AFB)
  • Cannon AFB
  • Holloman AFB
  • University of NM
  • NM State University
  • NM Public Schools
  • NM Emergency Management organizations
  • Federal Bureau of Investigations
  • US Attorney’s Office
  • US Forest Service Enforcement
  • US Customs and Border Patrol
  • NM Hospitals
  • NM Tribes and Pueblos
  • NM Pharmacy Association
  • NM Gas Company
  • NM Department of Corrections
  • Other NM State Agencies

What Works

  • Search for entities and communities that employ and/or serve a substantial number of individuals that will make the closed POD operational concept resource efficient.
  • Set up meetings with these entities to discuss and promote the advantages of Closed POD partnering for their community and their employees and their families and their critical vendors and contractors.
  • Enter into formal agreements that will ensure that the execution of distribution and dispensing operations takes place expeditiously and according to guidelines set forth by public health authorities.
  • Develop detailed Closed POD Plans that are specific to the entities and that ensure the most efficient use of internal resources and provides channels and processes for the attainment of equipment and supplies from external entities and agencies when needed.
  • Providing medication or vaccination to the public through massive open points of dispensing requires adequate staff, materials, and planning statewide.


  • Continue to identify entities with closed POD partnering potential at federal, state, and county levels, including government and non-governmental agencies, organizations, and the private sector.
  • Coordinate with local emergency management staff to ensure collaborative closed POD planning efforts.

Action Plan

  • Q1: Develop additional hospital closed POD Plans that will increase the population served by over 30,000. Hold a meeting with the NM Gas Company to review a proposed closed POD plan that will serve another 2,100 state residents. Initiated formal agreement. Completed.
  • Q2: Collect information from Public Health Division regions regarding progress on the identification and development of closed POD partnerships including the number of the populations to be served. Increase the state’s population served by closed PODs to 32,000. In Q2, the NM Gas Company signed an agreement with NMDOH as a closed POD partner. Completed.
  • Q3: Ascertain the results of regional closed POD Partnering efforts, calculate the increase, and adjust recruitment efforts as needed to produce an 18,000 resident increase in those served by closed PODs. Incomplete.
  • Q4: Identify closed POD partners that will serve at least another 18,000 residents. Incomplete.

FY17 Annual Progress Summary

In FY17, efforts in the development and planning of closed PODs have resulted in increasing the populations served from 11.5% to 12.2%. The increase can be attributed to the efforts to work more closely with hospitals and treatment centers to develop plans for dispensing to critical infrastructure staff, critical contractors, and family members. Efforts in updating and revising formal agreements and plans with New Mexico’s major military installations also produced an increase in the population served. Preparation and foundations for further closed POD partnering with pharmacies and other corporate entities have been initiated during FY17 that will contribute to a further increase of the state’s population served by closed PODs.

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