County Executive’s Corner: “Rockland is Ready”

By County Executive Ed Day

Rockland is ready. Our Office of Fire and Emergency Services, Department of Health and the Department of General Services – Purchasing Division have been working proactively as a team to request or purchase all the necessary PPE and other supplies needed for the COVID-19 response.

The staff in these Departments have been working tirelessly to get critical items where they are needed most. Together we are maintaining these supply lines and keeping this equipment flowing into Rockland County.

The Rockland County Office of Fire and Emergency Services (RCOFES) has placed hundreds of requests for more than 94 different local agencies to New York State for necessary supplies including sanitizer, masks, gloves, face shields, gowns and hospital equipment including ventilators.

This equipment is going to first responders, nonprofits, hospitals and those on the front lines who need it most. We are working to protect those who continue to put themselves in harm’s way as they respond to this pandemic.

As a former first responder myself who has family in health care field, I understand your worries and have taken the steps necessary to ensure that those on the frontlines have the appropriate PPE, especially N95 masks. We receive daily updates from both local hospitals in terms of capacity and how they stand on equipment.

Under normal circumstances, both of our County hospitals utilize their own supply chain for equipment. In these times, if there is a need for additional supplies, our Office of Fire and Emergency Services submits requests on their behalf to the New York State Responds System. Our County Purchasing Division also connects the hospitals to vendors and suppliers they can order from directly.

This continues to be a challenging, 7 day a week effort as we face critical shortages of medical supplies. In addition to the limited supply of PPE equipment, price gouging and counterfeit medical supplies are also an issue. But I want to give credit to several local vendors which have been instrumental in obtaining PPE at reasonable pricing.

I am so proud of the way our team here in County Government and the people of Rockland County have stepped up to help. We have received so many donations of PPE from local businesses and residents which is later distributed to those who need it most.

We will continue to work closely on obtaining these supplies and communicating with local hospitals, first-responders and nonprofits to ensure those on the frontlines are protected from COVID-19. Thank you to all of those who have stepped up in support during this time of crisis. Through your hard work Rockland is ready.