October 12, 2016
On October 19, the University of New England (UNE) will host a public health emergency preparedness training exercise on its Biddeford campus, in collaboration with state and community partners. As part of this exercise, free influenza vaccines will be offered to the public from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. at UNE’s Biddeford Harold Alfond Forum (11 Hills Beach Road).
“For several years UNE has registered to be part of a volunteer network of Points of Distribution, or PODs, that will serve as centers for administering medicines, vaccines, and/or necessary supplies for the public in the event of a large-scale emergency,” explained Dora Anne Mills, M.D., M.P.H., FAAP, vice president for Clinical Affairs and director of UNE’s Center for Health Innovation. “To fully prepare for emergency circumstances, UNE faculty, staff and students are working in collaboration with state and community partners to simulate such an event, and we will offer free influenza vaccines to the public as part of the exercise. No prior appointment is necessary for people wanting to obtain vaccine.”
UNE’s partners in this exercise include Maine Centers for Disease Control (CDC), York District Public Health Council, York County Emergency Management Agency, the City of Portland’s Maine Cities Readiness Initiative, Maine Responds (Maine’s emergency health volunteer system) and Southern Maine Regional Resource Center for Public Health Emergency Preparedness.
In addition to working with these partners, UNE’s Center for Health Innovation is working collaboratively with the university’s health professions programs on this initiative to provide learning experiences for UNE students. “A number of medical, public health, pharmacy and other students are attending sessions run by emergency preparedness experts and assisting in administering vaccines,” said Mills. “As a result, southern Maine will be better prepared for an emergency today, and tomorrow’s health professionals will also be better prepared.”
To learn more about the Center for Health Innovation, visit www.une.edu/academics/centers-institutes/center-excellence-health-innovation
To apply, visit www.une.edu/admissions