Press Release - TRIPOD
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, May 22, 2002
NEW YORK CITY OFFICE OF EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT
HOLDS TRIAL POINT-OF-DISPENSING DRILL (TRIPOD)
Drill for Distribution of Medication In the Event
of a Biological Attack Had Been Scheduled for September 12, 2001
The New York City Office of Emergency Management
(OEM) today held the first-ever Trial Point of Dispensing drill
also known as "Operation TriPOD" to test
OEM's effectiveness in responding to a biological attack (see EVENT
PHOTOS). Tripod is a six-hour, real-time drill administered
by OEM, in cooperation with the United States Department of Justice
(USDOJ), the Weill Medical College of Cornell Medical Center, the
New York City Department of Health (DOH), the New York City Fire
Department (FDNY) and the New York City Police Department (NYPD),
along with the American Red Cross of Greater New York.
Tripod had originally been scheduled to take place
on September 12th, 2001, at Pier 92-which ironically had served
as the temporary home of OEM shortly after the terrorist attacks
"The setting for our first-ever Tripod drill
should serve as a poignant reminder of the importance of preparedness,"
said John T. Odermatt, Commissioner of OEM. "Today, we find
ourselves in the same place where the City regrouped following 9/11.
Since that fateful day, New York has returned to normal, and we
now use this venue not in the aftermath of a terrorist attack, but
rather to prepare for one."
USDOJ Assistant Attorney General Deborah J. Daniels
said, "The Office of Justice Programs, through its Office for
Domestic Preparedness, is pleased to support the New York City Tripod
Exercise. We look forward to strengthening our partnership with
the City of New York, through continued strong support of its domestic
DOH Commissioner Thomas R. Frieden said, "
As demonstrated by the anthrax events last fall, any response to
a biological attack requires a large scale, multi-agency effort.
The Tripod drill reinforces the City's preparedness by bringing
together the public health community with first responders and law
Tripod took place on Wednesday, May 22nd, at Pier
92 on Manhattan's West Side. POD staff, comprising members of OEM,
the Department of Health (DOH), the Fire Department (FDNY), and
the Police Department (NYPD), supervised the processing of over
600 volunteers, whom along with cadets from the Police and Fire
Department Academies, took on the role of members of the affected
population during this drill.
These "patients" simulated the ill effects
of a biological attack, and were sent through the POD (point-of-dispensing)
process as they would be during the aftermath of an actual attack.
The first stage for all "patients" was a griage
a combination of greeting and triage during which they were
evaluated purely on superficial conditions, e.g. "This patient
appears to be ill."
Those "patients" then moved on to triage,
where they were asked basic questions about their condition. From
that group, some went on to medical evaluation, then medication
dispensing, as deemed necessary.
One of the aims of the exercise was to process
approximately 1,000 "patients" per hour. The results of
Tripod will be evaluated for its effectiveness in providing medication
and basic information for the threatened community, as well as for
its ability to direct asymptomatic victims away from hospitals,
in the hopes of reserving these critical facilities for the severely
City officials will also study the feasibility
of applying the Tripod model to other large-scale hazards that could
affect the City, and for establishing Tripod as the basis for point-of-dispensing
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