McLean County health officials want to troubleshoot their response to a large-scale disaster and they want the public's help.
The county Health Department is teaming with emergency responders and social services agencies in hosting a disaster simulation on Friday, Sept. 14, at Illinois State's Redbird Arena.
Health Department spokeswoman Lisa Slater said the drill will simulate the mass distribution of medications.
“Any and all of the aspects of this exercise will be very carefully looked at just to see how well we were able to meet the needs,” Slater said.
Slater said the group is looking for volunteers who will act as residents in need of medicine.
“We do a hotwash after any sort of event like this that is practices here at the health department and we’ll pull together with all of our partners and say, ‘Where did we fall down? Where was there an unanticipated situation?'" Slater said.
“Maybe it was a language barrier we hadn’t anticipated we would encounter. So then we know we have to be sure we are ready and we have within our disposal the ability to communicate with the different residents within our community.”
The Health Department is coordinating the exercise with McLean County Emergency Management Agency, Illinois State University, McLean County Disaster Council, Nicor Gas, Normal Fire Department, American Red Cross and the Salvation Army of McLean County.
Volunteers will have to register in advance. They can call the McLean County Health Department at (309) 888-5450 or visit the department’s website.
WGLT depends on financial support from users to bring you stories and interviews like this one. As someone who values experienced, knowledgeable, and award-winning journalists covering meaningful stories in Central Illinois, please consider making a contribution.