The event is part of “Operation Medicine Delivery,” a test designed to see how fast postal teams can deliver medicine to homes in a simulated public health emergency. As part of the exercise, postal volunteers escorted by law enforcement officers will deliver a simulated supply of medication to approximately 37,000 residences. Each household will get an empty pill bottle and a flyer explaining the purpose of the exercise.
Delivery will occur in ZIP codes 55101, 55102, 55411 and 55422 in
Agencies participating in the exercise include the U.S. Postal Service, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Minnesota Department of Health, ECHO Minnesota, and local public health and law enforcement agencies.
In this exercise, government agencies will test the postal plan to help communities prepare for and respond to various public health emergencies. For example, if there were a bioterrorist attack using anthrax, people would need to get started on antibiotics with 48 hours. Local public health agencies would set up special clinics to get people medicine, and they may also use postal delivery to quickly distribute medicine. An ample supply of medication has been stockpiled for use in emergencies. These medications would be provided to the public free of charge.
The idea of using postal delivery teams to distribute preventive medication during an emergency has already been tested, on a limited basis, in
More information about Operation Medicine Delivery is available at the MDH website at www.health.state.mn.us/oep/postal.html. Emergency, Community, Health, and Outreach (ECHO)