Learn More >

Ministry Status: Activation Status

Emergency Planning and Preparedness

National Emergency Stockpile System (NESS)

What is NESS?

The National Emergency Stockpile System (NESS) is one of the programs within the Office of Emergency Response Services, Centre for Emergency Preparedness and Response, Public Health Agency of Canada. The mission of the program is "to have sufficient quantities of supplies in support of the provision of provincial health and social services in their efforts to alleviate pain and suffering and to save the lives of Canadians and others who are affected by natural and human caused disasters."

The NESS program consists of two major components :

  • Pre-positioned supplies and equipment; and,
  • Federal Reserve warehouses.

The pre-positioned emergency supplies and equipment are stored in strategic locations across the country. The locations of the pre-positioned materials are determined by the province; however precise locations are not made public.

The NESS equipment and supplies are owned by the Public Health Agency of Canada and are made available to the Provinces/Territories on a loan basis. Pre-positioned components are managed by the Ministry of Health & Long Term Care, Emergency Management Branch (EMB) and the Ministry of Community and Social Services (MCSS).

Components of the NESS Program :

Type of Stockpile Access Information
200 Bed Emergency Hospitals :
capable of providing support to the existing health care system by the provision of acute and short term medical care in a worst-case scenario. Also has the adaptability to support social services functions (i.e. evacuation centres, reception areas, shelters, etc.)
  • 2 Pre-positioned in the Province and in Federal warehouses
  • Available through MOHLTC EMB
  • 1-866-212-2272
Advanced Treatment Centres :
capable of providing early medical and limited surgical procedures in a "field" environment and support the movement of patients to other health care facilities. Also can support the movement of evacuees and the operations of shelters, evacuation centres, reception areas, etc.
  • Positioned in Federal warehouses
  • Available through MOHLTC EMB
  • 1-866-212-2272
Casualty Collecting Units :
capable of providing support to the existing health care system by the provision of acute and short term medical care in a worst-case scenario. Also has the adaptability to support social services functions (i.e. evacuation centres, reception areas, shelters, etc.)
  • 33 pre-positioned in the Province
  • Available through MOHLTC EMB
  • 1-866-212-2272
Reception Centre Kits :
provides supplies, and registration and inquiry materials for the setup and operation of the reception functions for evacuation centres/shelters.
  • Deployed by MCSS
  • 1-866-212-2272
Mobile Feeding Units
provides an emergency feeding capability in a "field" environment, or where normal food services are not available.
  • Deployed by MCSS
  • 1-866-212-2272
Trauma Kits :
consist of first aid, intubation, IV solutions and medical components to support first line response and triage-patient staging (mini clinics, advanced treatment centres, etc.)
  • Positioned in Federal warehouses
  • Available through MOHLTC EMB
  • 1-866-212-2272
Mini Clinics :
intended to supplement existing medical care facilities in a disaster situation that overwhelms their system. It would be located adjacent to these facilities to triage and treat the less seriously injured.
  • Positioned in Federal warehouses
  • Available through MOHLTC EMB
  • 1-866-212-2272
Quarantine Units :
has the capacity to support up to 300 persons that are suspect of having or have been in contact of an infectious disease and are entering Canada at one of its airports. These persons may have to be detained under Federal Authority for a specific period of time to obtain medical clearance before being allowed to leave the airport. Other quarantine incidents may also be supported by this unit.
  • Positioned in Federal warehouses
  • Available through MOHLTC EMB
  • 1-866-212-2272
CBRNE Push Packs :
In response to the risk of a terrorist incident NESS developed a component called a "Push Pack". The Push Pack unit is contained at the Office of Emergency Services, Ottawa Depot, in a state of readiness for distribution to special events when required.

The contents of a push pack are :
  • Nerve gas antidote auto injector sets, consisting of :
    • Atropen
    • Combopen
    • Diazepam
    • Trainers
  • Multi-dose Atropine Ampoules (1 mg/ml, 10ml)
  • Ciprofloxacin tablets, 500 mg
  • Reactive skin decontamination lotion (RSDL) pouches
  • Potassium lodide tablets, 130 mg
  • Positioned in Federal warehouses
  • Available through MOHLTC EMB
  • 1-866-212-2272

Note : NESS boxes are accessed by site custodians only on approval of the MOHLTC and the PHAC. Boxes are sealed for long-term storage and must not be opened by site custodians for inspection. Should a site custodian encounter a box that is opened or damaged, please contact the Emergency Management Branch.

For More Information

Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
Health System Emergency Management Branch
1075 Bay Street, Suite 810
Toronto, Ontario
Canada M5S 2B1
Fax : 416-212-4466
TTY : 1-800-387-5559
E-mail : emergencymanagement.moh@ontario.ca

 

Health workers and health sector employers can call the Healthcare Provider Hotline for more information
Toll free : 1-866-212-2272

CritiCall Ontario provides a 24 hour call centre for hospitals to contact on-call specialists; arrange for appropriate hospital bed access and facilitate urgent triage for patients
1-800-668-4357