Advertisement

Baltimore City helping residents get to medical care facilities

Baltimore Health Commissioner Dr. Leana Wen said city staffers have been working with local, state and private partners to make sure residents get life-sustaining medical care.

Patients needing important medical treatments, such as kidney dialysis, are being transported by fire truck and the National Guard as snow-covered roads continue to create hazardous driving conditions. In Baltimore for example, the fire department and National Guard are traveling down rough roads to pick up patients and take them to Maryland Transit Administration vehicles.

Advertisement

As of 6:30 p.m. Monday, the city had worked to get more than 200 residents to dialysis treatments, Wen said. In order to transport that many people, many of whom are elderly or handicapped, staffers and the city's transportation vendor mapped all the locations. After that, other resources were used to make sure the people could safely get out of their homes and that first responders could gain access to the residences.

"This is not easy. These individuals are out top priority," Wen said. "It was a tremendous team effort. It looks like the vast majority took our advice to get" refills before the storm hit.

In the wake of pharmacies being looted in the aftermath of April's riots, some residents found it difficult to get medicine refills. That hasn't been a major problem during the snowstorm, Wen said, adding that the calls were "low level in numbers."

Besides getting patients to needed treatments, Wen said the city is in constant communication with hospitals and clinics in order to make sure they have enough employees on hand. She said the health department will continue to monitor the weather and access to make sure residents can get to the needed treatment. Wen urged residents to check on neighbors and to call 311 for health information.

Advertisement
Advertisement