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PO Box 360
Trenton, NJ 08625-0360

For Release:
April 27, 2007

Fred M. Jacobs, M.D., J.D.
Commissioner

For Further Information Contact:
Thomas Slater
(609) 984-7160


 
DHSS Grants to Help New Jersey Healthcare Facilities Build Capacity for Emergency Response


 

TRENTON – The New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) has awarded just over $5 million in grants to healthcare facilities statewide to strengthen their ability to respond to public health emergencies. 

 

 “These grants demonstrate and extend the Department’s commitment to emergency preparedness throughout New Jersey,” said DHSS Commissioner Fred M. Jacobs, M.D., J.D. “Now is the time to invest in our healthcare facilities so they can be ready to meet natural or manmade disasters.”

 

A total of $5,020,377 was awarded to 80 acute care hospitals, 18 long-term care centers, and 16 FQHCs (federally qualified health centers).

 

The grants were made available through funding from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). Qualifying acute care hospitals were awarded up to $55,000 each, while qualifying long-term care institutions and FQHCs received up to $25,000 each.

 

All grant applicants are required to document how the investments in infrastructure and training will strengthen their ability to respond to emergencies and contribute to a regionalized public health response. 

 

Acute care hospitals and FQHCs will use the grants to purchase necessary patient-care equipment; to expand isolation, decontamination and communication capabilities; and to build caches of pharmaceutical supplies and personal protection equipment.  The funds can also be used for staff education and training, and to conduct preparedness drills and exercises.

 

New Jersey is one of the first states in the nation to award emergency preparedness grant funds to long-term care facilities.  The funds will be used to improve a facility’s ability to communicate and share information with public health, healthcare and emergency response partners during an event such as a hurricane.  Building communication infrastructure will help ensure the safety of the vulnerable, frail and elderly populations residing at these facilities.

 

Since 2001, DHSS has awarded $36,450,000 in preparedness grants to New Jersey healthcare facilities.  The funds have been used for a range of initiatives, including the development of regional Medical Coordination Centers.  The facilities have also used the funding to build reserves of equipment, supplies and pharmaceuticals, enhance communications, train healthcare workers and exercise emergency response plans.

 

For more information on New Jersey’s preparedness efforts, visit the Department web site at www.state.nj.us/health.

 
 
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