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Point of Dispensing Planning: Training in a Virtual World


What does this tool do?
The Virtual Point of Dispensing (POD) tool is a freely available open-source software package. This package allows one to view, modify or build new virtual worlds to demonstrate mass dispensing and other public health planning scenarios. It can be run on a local computer without the need for internet connection.

The Virtual POD can be used to:

  • Plan scenarios
  • Demonstrate scenarios to different audiences
  • Create images, videos for handouts or for training

The virtual world includes:

  • An avatar, a graphical representation of the learner, which navigates the virtual world.
  • Familiar components of a small community, for example a small school, TV station, local health departments, farm and a main street with stores.
  • A modifiable mass dispensing clinic.
  • A school, which is furnished with equipment, so the learner can practice setting up a POD in the school.
  • An instructional power point which includes two exercises in which the learner responds to a mass dispensing need or to a communicable incident such as HINI.

Who should use this tool?
This tool can be used by any organization that will be planning or participating in a community mass dispensing operation such as public health departments or selected partners.

Primary Toolkit:

PPHR Toolkit

Secondary Toolkits:

Medical Countermeasure (MCM) Toolkit

Keyword Area:

Community Assessment, Immunization, Mass Prophylaxis, Planning, Strategic National Stockpile (SNS), Vulnerable Populations


Institutional Author:

University of Minnesota, U-SEEE PERRC





The NACCHO Toolbox is a repository of available resources to help local public health practitioners. Tools are produced by local, state, and federal agencies, as well as academic institutions and other stakeholders. The contents of this Toolbox are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily reflect any official recommendations of NACCHO. NACCHO makes no express or implied warranty with respect to the contents and disclaims liability for any damages arising from or connected to the use of the material in this Toolbox.