Medication Center Resources


Customize Materials. You will need to customize materials with information about your agency or location, and real-time details about the emergency situation.

Work with your PIO. Always work with your assigned public information staff on communication issues.

Not required. Use of these materials is not required. They were developed as resources to help in public health emergency planning and response. Always consult your agency's emergency plans and policies, and follow appropriate Incident Command System procedures.

Questions? We will continue to add resources to this site as they are developed. Please direct questions regarding this site or emergency communication resources to

Links to Other Sites

It may be necessary to open medication centers (also known as Points of Dispensing or PODs) during a disease outbreak or bioterrorism attack. The tools on this page are designed to help prepare patient education materials and resources for the public.

When medication centers are open in an emergency, using effective communication tools can help prepare the public and get people through the process quickly. We recommend using the following messages as part of your public outreach strategy.

Primary messages about medication centers

  • At the medication center:
    • There is a large supply of medication.
    • There is no charge.
    • Staff will assist you.
    • The process is simple.
    • No identification is required.
  • Do not come to the medication center if you are ill. These centers are designed to dispense medication only.

Health care centers/alternate care sites. Additional materials are available to be used when opening special centers to care for the sick and injured when hospitals and clinics are overcrowded. It will be important to include information on how to access alternate care sites in medication center materials and vice versa.

Drive-through centers. If you are conducting a drive-through medication or vaccine center, this hand-out can be customized and used for your circumstance. Replace the highlighted areas with your local information.

Patient Education Materials

These are sample materials. Coordinate all materials with your subject matter experts, Strategic National Stockpile coordinator and public information office.

Medication center handout
This sheet is designed to be given out at medication centers to let the public know what to expect during their visit and as a take-home resource to help with follow-up questions. Customize the form by replacing the words in red with details about the medication center, the disease, and your local agency's information.

The handout is also available in the languages below. Add event specific information and your own contact information where indicated in red. (Some languages require installing character fonts on your computer. Contact your agency's computer specialist for more help.)

Medication center fact sheet

This fact sheet explains what a medication center is and what the public can expect when they are opened in an emergency. The handout is available in: English, Spanish, Chinese, Korean, Russian and Vietnamese.

Facts sheets about medications

Medication center signs
The Department of Health's Medication Center Signage web site provides information about using signs to create an effective crowd flow in your facility. You can also download files for printing your own signs or find out how to order complete printed sets.