COVID-19 Information and Resources for Emergency Responders

In response to the worldwide outbreak of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), which is caused by the SARS CoV-2 virus, the National Volunteer Fire Council has established this webpage to provide links to information and resources from various federal agencies and other sources that are relevant to emergency responders. We will update this page periodically as we become aware of new resources and information related to EMS or other emergency responders.

Actionable Items

  • FEMA is providing financial assistance for COVID-19-related funeral expenses incurred after January 20, 2020. Click here to learn more.
  • The CDC has released the COVID-19 Vaccine Communication Toolkit for Essential Workers to help build confidence in the vaccine. The toolkit can be used by fire, EMS, and rescue services leadership to educate their volunteer and career staff about the COVID-19 vaccines, raise awareness about the benefits of vaccination, and address common questions and concerns.
  • The Department of Homeland Security Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency has released the COVID-19 Vaccine Points of Distribution Physical Security Action Guide, which will help vaccine points of distribution managers and workers enhance their understanding of potential threats and physical security methods.
  • One of the approved COVID vaccines must be stored at -70° C (-94° F), and to maintain this ultra-low temperature during shipment and storage, it will be packed in dry ice or carbon dioxide. The NVFC has developed this guidance to assist emergency responders dealing with transportation and/or fixed facility emergencies involving the shipment, use, and/or storage of the vaccine.
  • NHTSA’s Office of EMS has a reporting tool for communicating EMS needs during the pandemic. It takes less than five minutes to fill out the form, and they ask agencies to take it on a weekly basis so they have up-to-date information as conditions on the ground change. Access the EMS COVID Resource Reporting Tool here.
  • Beware of fraudulent PPE. The CDC has put out information on counterfeit respirators/misrepresentation of NIOSH-approval and the FBI has issued a Liaison Information Report on Indicators of Fraudulent 3M Personal Protective Equipment.
  • The International Association of Fire Chiefs is asking firefighters that have been exposed, quarantined, and/or put into isolation to fill out this survey. The data will be used to populate the IAFC’s COVID-19 Fire Department Personnel Impact Dashboard to provide a situational awareness tool for fire departments.
  • First responders can use the free exposure tracking tool from FirstForward to document potential exposures to COVID-19. In the event you contract the virus, documentation is critical to demonstrate the line-of-duty connection if planning to file a benefits claim.
  • The UNC School of Medicine has released the Heroes Health app to enable first responders and healthcare workers to track their mental well-being during the COVID-19 pandemic and access mental health resources. Sign up as an individual or as a department.
  • The following NVFC webinars are now available on demand:
  • The NVFC has released guidance to help departments hold virtual meetings.

Federal Agency Resources

Non-Federal Resources

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) offers the following standards, codes, and resources and to assist in prevention, mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery. Free online access is available for all NFPA codes and standards.