NYS DOH Will Begin Training New York National Guard Soldiers to Become Certified EMTs
Certification Will Result in Service Members Being Available For Clinical Deployment in Areas of Need
Governor Kathy Hochul today announced a new partnership between the New York State Department of Health and the New York National Guard that will train soldiers to become certified EMTs, resulting in additional service members eligible for clinical deployments at health care facilities in need of staff due to the winter surge of COVID-19.
The partnership builds on Governor Hochul's Dec. 1 deployment of 60 National Guard medical teams to various long-term care facility locations across New York.
"As we fight this surge, we are deploying every resource available to meet the needs of our health care system, and this expedited training partnership will help ensure our most vulnerable patients get the care they need," Governor Hochul said. "The Department of Health and our New York National Guard have been working side-by-side to fight this pandemic since Day 1, and I am proud to see this innovative plan between the two agencies come to fruition. When times get tough, New Yorkers put their heads together and find solutions."
In order to increase the ranks of National Guard personnel with medical training, DOH and NYS Division of Military and Naval Affairs are putting together two pilot classes of EMT training for 80 service members (two classes of 40) starting January 5. This will result in these service members being available for clinical deployment in February after the required 180 hours of training.
DOH-lead classes will be taught at Fort Hamilton Armed Forces Reserve Center at the U.S. Army post in Brooklyn and the Farmingdale Armed Forces Reserve Center on Long Island. The students will be on federal Title 32 COVID response mission orders, and additional soldiers will be identified for training should the need persist.
Major General Raymond Shields said, "Our New York National Guard Soldiers and Airmen have been taking on new missions on a regular basis since the start of this pandemic, ranging from delivering meals, to running tests sites to helping to administer over four million vaccinations. The service members who have volunteered for this training and this mission are looking forward to helping their fellow citizens once again."
Acting State Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett said, “Supporting our health care system is critical to protecting the health of New Yorkers and our heroic health care workers. The National Guard has been a partner to the State throughout the pandemic, and we look forward to launching this innovative program in collaboration with them. This training will enable us to have more clinical staff available for deployment throughout the state – injecting support when and where it may be needed most.”