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Philip Health Services, Inc. receives $5

Philip's Hans. P. Peterson Memorial Hospital will receive $5,000 in grant money from the state of South Dakota, which has approved $1,020,500 in grants to help hospitals and clinics with disaster preparedness efforts.

Since 2004, the state has awarded hospitals and rural health clinics more than $5.7 million dollars for such preparedness efforts as isolation and decontamination equipment, pharmaceutical stockpiles, and exercises and drills. All hospitals are eligible for the funding as well as 27 rural health clinics and community health centers that are either geographically distant from a hospital or serve a distinct population. This year for the first time, the state will also be awarding funds to long term care and home health care agencies.

"The response to any disaster always begins at the local level," said Governor Mike Rounds. "Making these grants to health care providers across the state helps local areas better prepare for disaster response, which makes the state better prepared as well. We're pleased to work with local health care providers on this effort."

The funding comes to the state Department of Health from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Assistant Secretary of Preparedness and Response. The grant dollars are to increase the capacity of health care facilities to respond to any disaster with mass casualties. This year's grants will support ongoing regional health care planning for disaster response, development of mass fatality management plans and hospital evacuation and shelter-in-place plans, a statewide real-time bed tracking system and continuing exercises.