Ariella Bak, NREMT, pioneered and manages the Community Resource Paramedicine Program within the Gainesville Fire Rescue department. She created this program while working as a volunteer for GFS and attending The University of Florida. Her team goes into the community to address the complex needs that are present and helps to identify the needs that align with the services that CIL provides, such as, access to affordable housing, home modifications, wheelchair ramps, to name a few. It’s this level of community collaboration that allows CIL to serve the independent needs of many people within their community.
Ariella shares with us the innovative program they’re facilitating to address the access and functional needs that people are challenged with for getting the COVID vaccination. People with disabilities, the most vulnerable population to COVID, are experiencing many barriers when it comes to receiving the vaccination. The Homebound Vaccination Program has Ariella and her team going into communities with disabled people to administer the vaccination. She talks about the logistics and the challenges in getting the COVID vaccination out to the community.