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Communications Office - Media Releases

CONTACT: Mark Sexton, Communications Coordinator
PHONE: (352) 374-5204; CELL: (352) 283-2317

For Immediate Release

Florida Department of Health Conducts Medical Surge Full Scale Exercise in Alachua County

3/21/2012 10:00 AM

FDOH, partners assess ability to execute medical surge response plans -

This press release put out at the request of the Alachua County Health Department.

ALACHUA COUNTY, FL – The Florida Department of Health today and March 22 is conducting an emergency preparedness exercise in Alachua County, to test local and state readiness and response capabilities in providing a comprehensive multi-discipline response resulting from a disaster event.

“This exercise provides the Department of Health and response partners the opportunity to assess individual response plans and collaborate on important public health and other related decision-making efforts in a reality-based scenario,” said Paul Myers, Administrator, Alachua County Health Department.

Government and emergency response agencies, State and local officials and private sector partners are participating in the two-day mock exercise, including: Florida Department of Health Central Office -Division of Emergency Medical Operations, Alachua County Health Department, Alachua County Emergency Management, Shands Vista, Shands Rehabilitation Center, Shands Healthcare, North Florida Regional Medical Center, State Medical Response Team (SMRT), Gainesville Veterans Affairs, and the Regional Transit System (RTS).

The exercise is being held at the following locations in Gainesville:

March 21

  • Alachua County Emergency Management Emergency Operations Center
  • Shands at UF (hosting Alternate Care Site)

March 22

  • Alachua County Emergency Management Emergency Operations Center
  • North Florida Regional Medical Center
  • Trinity Methodist (hosting Alternate Care Site)

The exercise program was made possible by a US Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response grant, and sponsored through a collaborative effort by the Florida Department of Health and Alachua County.  The exercise completes objectives to support medical surge operations in accordance with the State’s strategic plan and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Public Health Preparedness Capabilities: National Standards for State and Local Planning; Alachua County’s ability to test local surge capacity, the set-up of an Alternate Care Site (ACS) and patient tracking capabilities. This exercise also meets hospital Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) requirements for an external or community drill.

For additional information about the Florida Department of Health and the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) grant program, visit and

If you have a disability and need an accommodation in order to participate in a County program, service or public meeting, please contact the Alachua County Equal Opportunity Office at (352)374-5275 at least 3 business days prior to the event. TTY users please call 711 (Florida Relay Service).


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