Emergency Preparedness


Public Health Emergencies

  • To report a Public Health Emergency, call 911
  • MDH Emergency Operations Contact Information: During business hours, to reach the Minnesota Department of Health, call 651-201-5000 or 1-888-345-0823, or for TTY: 651-201-5797

Public Health Emergency Preparedness

Public Health Emergency Preparedness involves coordinating, planning, and communicating with partner agencies, organizations, and the members of our community to understand potential threats and effective responses to various public health emergencies.

Rice County Public Health is continually preparing to respond to public health emergencies including illness related to food or water, communicable disease outbreaks, as well as health related effects from natural or man-made disasters.  This includes performing exercises for mass medication dispensing or vaccine administration in case of a local, regional, or statewide communicable disease outbreak.  Rice County Public Health also works in partnership with the Minnesota Department of Health to help assure essential services.
Websites are listed below which include helpful information, toolkits, lists, and forms to become better prepared for emergencies.

Emergency Preparedness and YOU

The Center for Disease Control has useful information regarding diseases and conditions, healthy living, travelers’ health, emergency preparedness, as well as many other topics that might be of concern to you.
Please feel welcome to visit their website at: http://www.cdc.gov/
Si prefiere visitar el sitio web en español, puede hacerlo en: http://www.cdc.gov/spanish/
Ready Rice County :A Home Emergency Preparedness Guide.
What are the different types of natural disasters and public health emergencies?
What do I need to include in my emergency car kit or disaster supply kit?
Where can I find useful phone numbers and a list of emergency radio and TV stations?
Answers to these questions and more helpful information can be found in the  Ready Rice County guide:

Everbridge Citizen Alert

Rice County Public Health will utilize Everbridge Citizen Alert, as one way to notify residents of an emergency or an important community alert.  All Rice County residents can sign up for this free service.  Information entered is protected and will not be used for any other purposes.

How this Notification System Works

Messages can be sent to all standard voice and text communication devices that residents have registered, including landline phones, cell phones, e-mail, and more.  To sign up for the Everbridge Citizen Alert please click on the following link: https://ww2.everbridge.net/citizen/inputNewRegistration.action?gis_alias_id=1460781

Individual & Family Emergency Preparedness
The MN Department of Health has a wealth of information regarding individual and family preparedness, as well as many other topics.  This information is available at: http://www.health.state.mn.us/macros/topics/emergency.html
Be Red Cross Ready
To learn more about donating blood or funds, training and certification programs, or to learn about how you can help in your community, visit the American Red Cross at:  http://www.redcross.org
Para aprender más acerca de la Cruz Roja Americana, haga clic aquí:  http://www.redcross.org/cruz-roja
Rice County Meetings Regarding Emergency Preparedness
Rice County Emergency Preparedness Advisory Council
The Rice County Emergency Medical Services Provider Council was started in 1988.  This group continues today and has since been renamed as the Rice County Emergency Preparedness Advisory Council in 2014.  This group represents our local emergency response partners and includes many disciplines.  The group meets quarterly and is administratively supported by Rice County Public Health.  Meetings are generally held from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. on the 2nd Wednesday in the months of January, April, July, and October.  This advisory council meets to ensure coordination among providers and assess needs in the County.  The Council also functions in an advisory capacity to the Public Health Departments emergency preparedness planning efforts.  If you are interested in attending, or would like more information, please call Rice County Public Health at 507-332-6111, and ask to speak with the Public Health Emergency Preparedness Coordinator.  You can learn more about the council by visiting: Emergency Preparedness Advisory Council

Emergency Community Health Outreach (ECHO)


Need important information in other languages?  As a leader in multi-language health, safety, civic engagement and emergency readiness communication, ECHO bridges the gap for immigrants and refugees in Minnesota.  Through close collaboration with health and safety experts, bilingual community leaders and talented spokespersons, ECHO crafts high quality programming for television and radio broadcast and phone, print, web, DVD and partner relay distribution designed to:
Reduce disparities in health care for immigrant and refugee communities that face higher infant mortality, higher rates of diabetes, heart disease and cancer – and shorter life spans;
Promote preventive care by raising awareness of some of the most serious and costly diseases facing all Minnesotans; and
Increase access to life-saving emergency information by facilitating efficient mass-media messaging in multiple languages.
Call the ECHO phone at 1-888-883-8831, or for more information, visit their website at: http://www.echominnesota.org/

Medical Reserve Corps of Rice County: Unit 1539

Medical Reserve Corps of Rice County is part of a nationwide initiative to help communities respond to all types of disasters. When disaster strikes, there is a need for volunteers who have had disaster training and have authorized credentials to respond quickly.
MRC units are community based, locally organized, and utilize volunteers interested in donating their time and expertise to prepare for and respond to emergencies.  MRC volunteers help supplement existing emergency and public health resources, and strengthen the public health in their communities.
Whether you are licensed or certified in a healthcare field, active or retired, or a person with an interest in assisting in a health response, we invite you to register for “Minnesota Responds.”  Both medical and non-medical volunteers are needed.  This is a great opportunity for people to take part in building a stronger healthier community, as well as an opportunity to network with other medical and non-medical community volunteers.  Trainings are available via web based programs, as well as in person.
Please go to www.medicalreservecorps.gov for more information or register at www.mnresponds.org. We appreciate your interest!
For questions regarding any of the above organizations or resources, please contact:
Rice County Public Health
Emergency Preparedness Coordinator