West Allis community paramedics vaccinate homebound residents

West Allis Fire Dept MIH Team
Posted at 4:18 PM, Feb 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-18 18:29:56-05

WEST ALLIS — Members of the West Allis Fire Department’s Mobile Integration Healthcare Team vaccinated residents who are 65 or older and homebound.

"The pandemic itself has caused a lot of stress on people and it’s great to see a department like ours getting out into the community,” said Christopher Williams, Lieutenant with the Mobile Integration Healthcare Unit.

The West Allis Health Department asked to fire department to assist with vaccinating residents who are eligible but unable to make it to the health department to receive the vaccine. The community paramedics will vaccinate about 20 residents over two days.

“Rather than this being a health department initiative or a fire department initiative, we are trying to work together being able to better serve the citizens of the city in ways that quite frankly have never been done before,” said Armando Suarez Del, Deputy Chief of the Mobile Integration Healthcare Bureau.

West Allis resident, Betty Labarbra was the first to receive the vaccine, she said the process was quick and easy.

"I didn’t even know the needle was in," said Betty.

Betty’s neighbor, Pam Ziolecki stopped by to assist Betty and provide moral support. She said she is happy her 94-year-old friend is getting vaccinated.

“It’s going to be awesome for her to get protected,” said Pam.

The community paramedics said although they have never administered a vaccine in a home setting, they believe this is how to stop the spread of the virus by different departments working together to serve the community.

“We are finding a common purpose and really attacking it from all angles,” said Christopher.

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