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SVAC Approved to Administer COVID Tests and Vaccines

raizenThe New York State Department of Health has approved the Scarsdale Volunteer Ambulance Corps to provide community paramedicine service to area residents. With this approval, SVAC can expand its services beyond initial emergency medical care and transportation to the hospital. It is only one of two agencies in the county to receive such approval. Scarsdale Mayor Marc Samwick applauds the initiative displayed by SVAC in pursuing creative solutions to community health and well-being, having commented, “The Village of Scarsdale is blessed to be served by the dedicated volunteers comprising SVAC and is appreciative of State and County support for delivering much needed medical services to local at-risk populations through such innovative and cost-effective programs.”

The state has authorized SVAC to operate phase one of the program, which includes COVID-19 testing at the agency’s headquarters at 5 Weaver Street, as well as in schools. It also allows certified SVAC personnel to administer the COVID-19 vaccine to patients in their homes, pending County approval. Mayor Samwick commented, “I am hopeful that Westchester County will expedite approval of the final step: Providing vaccines to SVAC so it may begin its important work supporting the health needs of at-risk, homebound seniors and others.”

“In an emergency, we bring all of the initial medications and procedures you would receive in the ER directly to the patient,” said David Raizen, SVAC President. “Similarly, this allows us to bring non-emergent testing and inoculation directly to our patients, which is particularly important to those who have difficulty ambulating or prefer the convenience and safety of remaining home.”

SVAC has requested authorization to run a vaccine POD at their headquarters to supplement direct home care and maximize vacation administration efficiency. It has also filed for phase two approval to expand beyond the immediate pandemic needs to include other tests and follow-up care.

“Community paramedicine is the future of healthcare and has been rolled out successfully in many states throughout the country,” said Raizen. “The ultimate goals are to provide chronic disease and injury prevention, reduce 911 requests and transports for non-urgent patients, and provide follow-up care for high-risk patients without hospital readmission.”

With many patients introduced to telemedicine during the pandemic, Raizen sees an opportunity to collaborate with White Plains Hospital to address its limitations. “Telemedicine is a huge advancement,” says Raizen, “but you often need some test, procedure or blood work for the doctor to analyze that traditionally limits telemedicine and requires a visit. With community paramedicine, your White Plains Hospital doctor could request us to provide certain services within the safety of your home for your remote appointment.”

Contact: David Raizen, SVAC President ,914-722-2288

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