State Watch

New York National Guard deploys medics to long-term care facilities

Associated Press/John Minchillo

The New York National Guard said it has deployed 120 medics and medical technicians to a dozen long-term care facilities statewide, CNN reported

In their statement on Wednesday, the Guard said the service members will be deployed to facilities in Syracuse, Rochester, Albany, Buffalo, Utica, Plattsburgh, Uniondale, Liberty, Vestal, Olean, Lyons and Goshen.

The Guard’s director of joint operations, Brig. Gen. Isabel Rivera Smith, said it “looked for trained medics or medical technicians who were not also working in the health care field in their civilian life” for the task.  

“It makes no sense to take a young woman who is an Air Force med-tech and works at a hospital out of that job, only to place her in another health care facility,” Smith said in the statement. 

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) ordered the latest mission last week, saying she might deploy the Guard at state hospitals as well. 

Some 50 hospitals in northern New York had less than 10 percent of bed capacity available last week due to a lack of staff, according to CNN. 

Before their latest mission, the New York National Guard was stationed at 13 vaccination and six logistics sites and assembling COVID-19 test kits, according to its statement. 

Maine Gov. Janet Mills (D) said Wednesday she is activating her state’s National Guard amid a shortage of ICU beds and surging COVID-19 cases. 

“I do not take this action lightly, but we must take steps to alleviate the strain on our health care system and ensure care for all those who need it,” Mills said in her statement. 

“For your health, for the health of an elderly person, for the health of a child, for our health care workers, for the National Guard, get vaccinated, please. It may save your life or someone else’s,” she added.

Tags #coronavirus COVID-19 Albany COVID-19 Janet Mills Kathy Hochul National Guard New York New York National Guard

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