Press Release

November 22, 2006



Provena United Samaritans Medical Center upgrading emergency radio system

DANVILLE, Ill. – In continued efforts to ensure public safety during an emergency, Dr. Eric E. Whitaker, state public health director, announced today a $28,990 grant to Provena United Samaritans Medical Center in Danville to upgrade the hospital’s emergency radio system. The grant is funded by the federal Chemical Stockpile Emergency Preparedness Program (CSEPP) and administered by the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH).

“Good communication is vital during an emergency in order to save lives and protect people from various health hazards. Emergency workers need to be able to communicate with hospitals and health care workers to coordinate a plan of action,” said Dr. Whitaker. “Normal lines of communications may not be working during a crisis, therefore it’s important an emergency system in place.”

The Chemical Stockpile Emergency Preparedness Program (CSEPP) helps fund emergency preparation efforts in eight communities around the U.S. where chemical weapons are stockpiled. Illinois receives CSEPP funding for emergency planning in Edgar and Vermilion counties which boarder the Newport Chemical Depot in Indiana.

“A communication breakdown in an emergency situation can spell disaster,” said Dave Stone, Regional Director of Emergency Preparedness for the Provena Central Illinois Region. “With this upgrade to our current system, we are enhancing our ability to be in constant contact with each other and with local authorities in an emergency, even when land lines and cell towers are down.”

Provena’s new system, which includes 40 hand-held two-way radios, is set to arrive and be in use by the end of the year.

Throughout 2006, Provena United Samaritans has put forth extra effort to increase its level of preparedness in case a disaster or emergency situation.

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Illinois Department of Public Health
535 West Jefferson Street
Springfield, Illinois 62761
Phone 217-782-4977
Fax 217-782-3987
TTY 800-547-0466
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