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The Franklin County Public Health Emergency Preparedness (PHEP) Coalition is a regional coalition of 24 Franklin County towns and one Hampshire County town to address and continually improve public health emergency preparedness.  Fully funded by a federal grant managed by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, the PHEP Coalition helps local Emergency Management Directors, Boards of Health, and volunteers with planning, training, and drills for responding to public health emergencies, such as natural disasters and outbreaks of emerging infectious diseases.

MEETS: Second Monday of the month

The Franklin County PHEP Coalition exists to align planning, training, and exercises amongst our region’s public health leaders while coordinating closely with the Franklin Regional Emergency Planning Committee (REPC).

FRCOG staff work to ensure municipal Boards of Health are aware of the protocols and procedures for statewide public health emergency response, including use the of Massachusetts Health and Homeland Alert Network (HHAN), and WebEOC, the Commonwealth’s virtual messaging board used to ensure situational awareness during emergencies. Staff partner with DPH to offer trainings to local boards on these tools, as well as trainings on “Introduction to the Incident Management System” (ICS), the system used by public agencies to manage emergencies in the Commonwealth.

The full coalition, consisting of one representative from each member town, meets annually in June.  Its Steering Committee, a 5-12 member subset of the full coalition, meets monthly to advise FRCOG staff on planning and training needs, and to work collaboratively to enhance public health preparedness in the region.

COVID-19 After Action Report

The primary driver of PHEP Coalition grant funding has been the development and maintenance of Emergency Dispensing Site plans. These plans informed the operation of regional COVID-19 vaccination clinics in 2020.

In 2022, the Coalition completed an After-Action Report to take stock of EDS planning in light of COVID-19 activities, and hired a consultant to develop recommendations to move forward in light of the After-Action Report. Final recommendations were issued in December of 2022, and will inform Coalition activities moving forward in 2023.

Franklin County PHEP Coalition Contacts
Dan Nietsche Headshot.

Dan Nietsche

Emergency Preparedness Planner
Xander Sylvain Headshot.

Xander Sylvain

Emergency Preparedness Program Manager
  • Duncan Colter
  • Donna Gibson
  • John Hillman
  • Carolyn Shores Ness
    Deerfield (co-chair)
  • Norene Pease
    Shutesbury (co-chair)
  • Mae Tanner
  • Daniel Wasiuk
  • Chief Phillip Wonkka
    Erving Fire Dept./EMD
Meeting Minutes

Note: Meeting agendas are posted on the Meetings & Events calendar on the date of the meeting.

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