Joint initiative recognizes efforts made by county businesses

CARMEL, NY— From the very beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, countless businesses in Putnam County have worked tirelessly to comply with or exceed New York State Covid-19 guidelines. To recognize the efforts of these businesses, “Working to Stop the Spread” certificates are now available through Putnam County Economic Development Corporation (EDC) and Putnam County Tourism.

“Many of our businesses seem to have really nailed it in regard to keeping their customers and employees protected from the virus. The certificates that we offer simply express our recognition of a job well done” says Kathleen Abels, president of Putnam County’s EDC. “These signs are an opportunity for businesses to reassure customers and clients of their commitment to provide a safe place to do business.”

The signs can be downloaded by business owners who follow the NY Forward guidelines and have worked to stop the spread of Covid-19 by enforcing safety measures to keep their communities safe.

“It is important that we recognize these businesses for their hard work, but it is also important for those going into a business to feel safe doing so,” says Tracey Walsh, director of Putnam County Tourism, who is partnering with Ms. Abels on this initiative. “Seeing a displayed certificate is a pledge to customers that they are doing business with someone who cares about their safety.”

“I applaud our local businesses, which throughout the pandemic have had to continuously adapt to changing rules and circumstances,” says Ms. Abels. “From creating business reopening safety plans to implementing best practices, these entrepreneurs have had to navigate through the labyrinth of NY Forward guidelines during a year like no other.”

To download a sign, go to the EDC website at putnamedc.org or to the Tourism website at visitputnam.org or email the EDC at Kathleen.Abels@putnamcountyny.gov.

Breakdown of positive cases by towns in Putnam County 1/11/2021

Cases: See Community Impact Dashboard attached. Case numbers may be updated based on address verification process.  

Schools: Most Putnam County schools are resuming in-person learning this week. Some of them will be proactively testing a portion of their population, while others plan to hold off until the State requires testing.

Vaccine: Many county and town agencies and representatives have been overhwelmed with calls/emails/posts/dms regarding the vaccine availability in Putnam County. We are so pleased that many people are eager to get vaccinated! We are asking for patience as we await NYSDOH guidance on phase 1b roll-out. We anticipate more PCDOH-run vaccine PODs and will share this information as soon as it is available. Please feel free to share the following information (verbally or on social media) or use it as a guide for those fielding calls from residents. NYS planned to release a vaccination hotline today: 1-833-NYS-4-VAX (1-833-697-4829). Residents can check their eligibility here: https://am-i-eligible.covid19vaccine.health.ny.gov/ — however we have been informed that not all information on the site is up-to-date.

Early Warning Monitoring:  Mid-Hudson Region (updated 1/10/21 with data as of 1/9/2021) Overall hospital bed availability is declining. Test positivity rate for the region remains below 8%. 

 Putnam County (Updated 1/10/2021 with data as of 1/9/2021)

 

Vaccine Putnam County – The Putnam County Department of Health is preparing to expand COVID-19 vaccination distribution

The Putnam County Department of Health is preparing to expand COVID-19 vaccination distribution to those aged 75 and older, first responders, teachers and other essential workers who live and/or work in the county, as the state institutes Phase 1B of its vaccination program, Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell said.

“This is a good step forward,”  said Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell.  “The rollout will still be slow because the supply is so very limited. We are hopeful that vaccine production will ramp up and that the supply will increase to meet the demand.”

Vaccinations are by appointment only.

To sign up, start by seeing if you are eligible:

https://am-i-eligible.covid19vaccine.health.ny.gov/

If you are, you will be given a list of local places where you can get a vaccination.

Those eligible can also call the State COVID-19 Vaccination Hotline for an appointment: 1-833-NYS-4-VAX (1-833-697-4829).

 

Prior to receiving the vaccination, you must complete the New York State COVID-19 Vaccine Form. This form can be completed online at https://forms.ny.gov/s3/vaccine you will receive a submission ID.

Do not show up to a vaccination site without an appointment. You will not be given a vaccine.

For information about eligibility, phased distribution and more, visit https://covid19vaccine.health.ny.gov/what-you-need-know.

 

On Monday, Jan. 11, the Putnam County Department of Health ran its second Phase 1A vaccination point of dispensing, or POD, at Carmel Friendship Center on Old Route 6 for healthcare workers and those who live or work in nursing homes or group homes only. The health department has administered 600 doses of the Moderna vaccine, all it has received so far. The department expects another 300 doses this week.

Other agencies, including hospitals, urgent cares, health centers and pharmacies, will also be vaccinating people. Because of the limited supplies, it is expected to take until mid-April to vaccinate all the New York State residents in the approved 1A and 1B groups.

Those now eligible for COVID-19 vaccination include:

  • Teachers and education workers
  • First responders
  • Public safety workers
  • Public transit workers
  • People 75 and older
  • High-risk hospital workers (emergency room workers, ICU staff and Pulmonary Department staff)
  • Residents and staff at nursing homes and other congregate care facilities
  • Federally Qualified Health Center employees
  • EMS workers
  • Coroners, medical examiners and certain funeral workers
  • Staff and residents at OPWDD, OMH and OASAS facilities
  • Urgent Care providers
  • Individuals administering COVID-19 vaccines, including local health department staff
  • All Outpatient/Ambulatory front-line, high-risk health care workers of any age who provide direct in-person patient care
  • All staff who are in direct contact with patients (i.e., intake staff)
  • All front-line, high-risk public health workers who have direct contact with patients, including those conducting COVID-19 tests, handling COVID-19 specimens and COVID-19 vaccinations
  • Doctors who work in private medical practices and their staff
  • Doctors who work in hospital-affiliated medical practices and their staff
  • Doctors who work in public health clinics and their staff
  • Registered Nurses
  • Specialty medical practices of all types
  • Dentists and Orthodontists and their staff
  • Psychiatrists and Psychologists and their staff
  • Physical Therapists and their staff
  • Optometrists and their staff
  • Pharmacists and Pharmacy Aides
  • Home care workers
  • Hospice workers
  • Staff of nursing homes/skilled nursing facilities who did not receive COVID vaccination through the Pharmacy Partnership for Long-Term Care Program

COVID19 Vaccine Clinic for Phase 1A on Monday, January 11

The Health Department is offering a COVID-19 vaccine clinic on Monday, January 11 from 12 noon until 3 pm for those eligible during Phase 1A who live or work in Putnam County at the Carmel Friendship Center, 110 Old Route 6, Carmel.

Availability is limited and preregistration is required. NO WALK-INS allowed.

You must bring proof of residency and employment or your professional license. If you are not in Phase 1A, you will be turned away.

Phase 1A includes:

  • High-risk hospital workers (emergency room workers, ICU staff and Pulmonary Department staff)
  • Residents and staff at nursing homes and other congregate care facilities
  • Federally Qualified Health Center employees
  • EMS workers
  • Coroners, medical examiners and certain funeral workers
  • Staff and residents at OPWDD, OMH and OASAS facilities
  • Urgent Care providers
  • Individuals administering COVID-19 vaccines, including local health department staff
  • All Outpatient/Ambulatory front-line, high-risk health care workers of any age who provide direct in-person patient care
  • All staff who are in direct contact with patients (i.e., intake staff)
  • All front-line, high-risk public health workers who have direct contact with patients, including those conducting COVID-19 tests, handling COVID-19 specimens and COVID-19 vaccinations
  • This includes, but is not limited to,
    • Doctors who work in private medical practices and their staff
    • Doctors who work in hospital-affiliated medical practices and their staff
    • Doctors who work in public health clinics and their staff
    • Registered Nurses
    • Specialty medical practices of all types
    • Dentists and Orthodontists and their staff
    • Psychiatrists and Psychologists and their staff
    • Physical Therapists and their staff
    • Optometrists and their staff
    • Pharmacists and Pharmacy Aides
    • Home care workers
    • Hospice workers

Pre-register here: https://apps.health.ny.gov/doh2/applinks/cdmspr/2/counties?OpID=50501701

If you need to cancel your appointment, please do so through the link in your confirmation email as soon as possible to allow someone else to be vaccinated. PLEASE DO NOT CALL THE HEALTH DEPARTMENT WITH VACCINE QUESTIONS AT THIS TIME.

For more information about the COVID vaccine, please visit www.ny.gov/vaccine

Additional clinics may be scheduled as vaccine availability allows. Please check www.putnamcountyny.com for further announcements.

This information is current at the time it was shared and is subject to change.

Health Department Plans Closed COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic

Caption: Rebeca Garcia, RN, public health nurse at the Putnam County Department of Health, administers a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine to Jennifer Mottarella, LPN, the school nurse at St. James school in the Carmel Central School District.

  • 600 vaccines released to PCDOH from NYS on January 5
  • 251 administered on Jan 7 at first closed POD
  • First dose—January 7; second dose—February 4
  • Groups scheduled for next week’s closed POD clinic on Monday, January 11, are the same as 1/7— those living or working in facilities run by the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities, Office of Mental Health, and Office of Addiction Services and Support.

The Putnam County Department of Health has a closed COVID-19 vaccination clinic or POD scheduled for Monday, January 11. Similar to the first Putnam COVID clinic on January 7, the POD or point of distribution clinic, is targeted to higher risk populations and not open to the public but by appointment only to those living or working in facilities run by the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities, Office of Mental Health, and Office of Addiction Services and Support and certain other individuals and/or groups eligible in phase 1a of New York’s vaccination priority groups.

Putnam County Health Commissioner Michael J. Nesheiwat, M.D. administers a COVID-19 Vaccine to Kathleen L. Percacciolo BSN, RN Supervising Public Health Nurse

The Putnam County Department of Health vaccinated 251 people against COVID-19 Thursday during its first vaccination drive of the pandemic, Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell announced.

The vaccine clinic, or POD as it’s known, was not open to the public, but only by appointment to those living or working in facilities run by the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities, Office of Mental Health, and Office of Addiction Services and Support.

“This was our first time out of the gate and it went very well,” County Executive Odell said. “The health department started small in order to work out the details involved in inoculating large numbers of people in the midst of a pandemic.”

Between noon and 3 p.m., groups of those pre-approved for vaccination lined up at a safe social distance outside the Carmel Friendship Center on Old Route 6 in Carmel waiting for their turn to get jabbed. After they received their shots, they were watched closely while they waited in their cars for 15 minutes to make sure they did not have a reaction to the vaccine. The health department ran the POD with support from local law enforcement, EMS and plenty of volunteers.

Because of the limited vaccine supply, the state has given first priority to a broad group of healthcare workers and those in living in nursing homes or other congregate care.  Only those groups with state approval can be vaccinated at this time,  no matter where they get the vaccine, the local health department, or other venues that have also been given limited supply – pharmacies, urgent cares, health centers and hospitals.

“The vaccinations are the easy part,” Kathy Percacciolo, PCDOH Supervising Public Health Nurse said. “Sometimes the logistics can interfere with implementation— as we have seen happen in other places. Fortunately, in Putnam County we are experienced in running PODs and today’s POD went off without a hitch.”

The county health department received 600 Moderna vaccines from the state on Tuesday. It will hold a second POD on Monday for the same population group at the Carmel Friendship Center on Old Route 6 in Carmel.

Those approved for vaccination during New York State, Phase 1A include:

  • High-risk hospital workers (emergency room workers, ICU staff and Pulmonary Department staff)
  • Residents and staff at nursing homes and other congregate care facilities
  • Federally Qualified Health Center employees
  • EMS workers
  • Coroners, medical examiners and certain funeral workers
  • Staff and residents at OPWDD, OMH and OASAS facilities
  • Urgent Care providers
  • Individuals administering COVID-19 vaccines, including local health department staff
  • All Outpatient/Ambulatory front-line, high-risk health care workers of any age who provide direct in-person patient care
  • All staff who are in direct contact with patients (i.e., intake staff)
  • All front-line, high-risk public health workers who have direct contact with patients, including those conducting COVID-19 tests, handling COVID-19 specimens and COVID-19 vaccinations
  • This includes, but is not limited to,
    • Doctors who work in private medical practices and their staff
    • Doctors who work in hospital-affiliated medical practices and their staff
    • Doctors who work in public health clinics and their staff
    • Registered Nurses
    • Specialty medical practices of all types
    • Dentists and Orthodontists and their staff
    • Psychiatrists and Psychologists and their staff
    • Physical Therapists and their staff
    • Optometrists and their staff
    • Pharmacists and Pharmacy Aides
    • Home care workers
    • Hospice workers

 

PHOTO CAPTION:

Michael Nesheiwat, MD, Putnam County Commissioner of Health administers a Moderna COVID-19 vaccination to Kathy Percacciolo, PCDOH Supervising Public Health Nurse at the Carmel Friendship Center on Thursday Jan. 7

Putnam County received its first shipment of COVID-19 vaccines

Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell announced that the Putnam County Department of Health received its first shipment of COVID-19 vaccines and will begin vaccinating workers and residents of certain congregate living facilities this week.

“This is what we have all been waiting for,” County Executive Odell said. “At last, the vaccine is in the hands of our county health department and will be going into the arms of our healthcare providers and most vulnerable citizens. Our health department is trained for this, they are the experts in public vaccination programs and they are ready to go. The Department of Health runs vaccination programs every flu season and also when facing health crises like the H1N1 virus.”

The department received 600 doses of the Moderna vaccine on Tuesday and on Thursday will vaccinate staff and residents of facilities run by the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities, Office of Mental Health, and Office of Addiction Services and Support, agencies that were given priority by the state. The Moderna vaccine requires a second dose 28 days after the first.

Putnam County will conduct the closed COVID-19 vaccination Point-of-Dispensing (POD) for eligible county residents. Those who live or work in the facilities have been notified that they can sign up to receive the vaccine. PODs are a collaborative effort with the Department of Health at the helm and support from local law enforcement, EMS, and volunteers.

“When local health departments step up and run PODs, we are showing the community that we believe in this vaccine and truly see this as our way forward,” Michael Nesheiwat, MD Commissioner of Health said. “As the vaccine becomes more widely available, we strongly urge everyone who is eligible to get vaccinated.”

Putnam County Department of Health staff worked throughout the holiday week to put together a vaccination distribution plan that was requested on Christmas Eve by the Hudson Valley region’s vaccination hub at Westchester Medical Center. Putnam’s was among the first county distribution plans approved.

On Wednesday, County Executive Odell activated the Bureau of Emergency Services Incident Command Structure to oversee an orderly rollout of the COVID-19 vaccination program.

“We recognize there is both a desire for vaccines as well as a certain amount of vaccine hesitancy,” said Kathy Percacciolo, PCDOH Supervising Public Health Nurse. “Residents should be assured, the COVID-19 vaccines we have are safe and effective.”

The COVID-19 vaccine is in short supply — the state has received just 300,000 a week — and so the New York State Department of Health established a strict distribution schedule. The first phase, called Phase 1A, prioritizes healthcare workers and staff and residents of nursing homes and other congregate care facilities. Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Phase 1A includes 2.1 million healthcare workers. Putnam County has asked the state to include police and fire departments in Phase 1A.

County executives from the New York State Association of Counties have asked Gov. Andrew Cuomo for more independence in managing the vaccination process.

Local health departments are just one of the agencies that will distribute COVID-19. Hospitals, federally qualified health centers, urgent care centers and pharmacies have also been assigned various Phase 1A groups to vaccinate.

In New York State, Phase 1A includes:

  • High-risk hospital workers (emergency room workers, ICU staff and Pulmonary Department staff)
  • Residents and staff at nursing homes and other congregate care facilities
  • Federally Qualified Health Center employees
  • EMS workers
  • Coroners, medical examiners and certain funeral workers
  • Staff and residents at OPWDD, OMH and OASAS facilities
  • Urgent Care providers
  • Individuals administering COVID-19 vaccines, including local health department staff

As of Jan. 4, the following people qualify for vaccination:

  • All Outpatient/Ambulatory front-line, high-risk health care workers of any age who provide direct in-person patient care
  • All staff who are in direct contact with patients (i.e., intake staff)
  • All front-line, high-risk public health workers who have direct contact with patients, including those conducting COVID-19 tests, handling COVID-19 specimens and COVID-19 vaccinations
  • This includes, but is not limited to,
    • Doctors who work in private medical practices and their staff
    • Doctors who work in hospital-affiliated medical practices and their staff
    • Doctors who work in public health clinics and their staff
    • Registered Nurses
    • Specialty medical practices of all types
    • Dentists and Orthodontists and their staff
    • Psychiatrists and Psychologists and their staff
    • Physical Therapists and their staff
    • Optometrists and their staff
    • Pharmacists and Pharmacy Aides
    • Home care workers
    • Hospice workers

 

The state has not released detailed plans for the next phase, Phase 1B, but Gov. Andrew Cuomo has said it will cover 2.5 million people and include essential workers and those 75-years-old or older.

Dr. Nesheiwat said the Putnam County health department is prepared to vaccinate more residents and employees of Putnam County as the vaccine roll-out progresses.

The Centers for Disease Control and the state Department of Health advise those who have had COVID-19 to wait 90 days before getting vaccinated. Recipients of convalescent plasma must also wait 90 days. Individuals on quarantine cannot attend a vaccination POD.

Breakdown of positive cases by towns in Putnam County 1/4/2021

Breakdown of positive cases by towns in Putnam County 12/28/2020

12-25 DASHBOARD

Putnam County Planning for COVID Vaccine Roll-Out

Earlier this month New York State named Westchester Medical Center (WMC) as the vaccination hub for the Mid-Hudson region. WMC has now tapped local officials throughout the region to assist with vaccine distribution as quickly and efficiently as possible. 

“Putnam County has taken prompt action to support the hub,” says County Executive MaryEllen Odell. “We have identified representatives that work with under-served populations to serve on a regional task force for vaccine implementation. Each of our neighboring counties will advise the hub on local implementation—this regional collaboration is the key to ensuring our communities, particularly those most at-risk, are protected.” 

Michael Nesheiwat MD, Health Commissioner, adds, “Our health department has been prepared to receive vaccines and implement immunization pods. We have the expertise and are glad to be brought to the table to help the region successfully roll-out the vaccine to the prioritized groups.” 

The Putnam County Executive and the Commissioner of Health are working together to finalize locations for vaccine points of dispensing (PODS) and will follow the guidelines for priority and dispensing of the vaccine, according the New York State and CDC requirements. While the state and the region are still in Phase 1 of the roll-out to those most at risk, the Putnam County Department of Health is prepared to assist with vaccinations at each phase of implementation. Information for vaccine distribution to the general public will be shared as it becomes available. Up-to-date information on CDC COVID-19 vaccine recommendations can be found at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/8-things.html.