Nascentia Health received the 2022 Nonprofit Collaboration Award in conjunction with Onondaga County in the Central New York Business Journal’s annual Nonprofit Awards, held March 30. This award is given annually to recognizing successful collaboration between a nonprofit and another organization that has resulted in positive & measurable outcomes for both. Nascentia Health and Onondaga County were honored for our work together on the COVID response from 2020 through today. Andrea Lazarek-LaQuay, Nascentia Health’s chief clinical officer commented that, “Our collaboration with Onondaga County has been an amazing tribute to what we can do when our incredibly talented and dedicated staff come together. We have stood side by side with county personnel for two years and have seen our testing and vaccine programs save thousands of lives. We couldn’t be prouder of our frontline staff and the Onondaga County Emergency Management team who have tirelessly and selflessly served our community.”
Dan Wears, commissioner of emergency management for Onondaga County states that, “Nascentia was a tremendous partner who was able to quickly shift their resources at a moment’s notice. Without their help we would not have been as successful as we were in responding to this pandemic.”
When COVID was declared a public health emergency in NYS in 2020, Nascentia Health knew that our team of healthcare workers could help. Onondaga County Office of Emergency Management was already engaged in logistics, having started a drive-through testing site. Nascentia Health reached out to the county to see how our ready workforce of trained health professionals already embedded in the community could help. Since it was clear that we had to prioritize our seniors, Nascentia stepped in as a critical partner to bring testing to vulnerable seniors right in their homes, hunting down the virus and preventing further spread. This collaboration evolved and expanded to include pop-up clinics throughout Syracuse and the outer reaches of the county, using teams of Nascentia nurses and county staff to test large numbers of citizens. After working year-round to test tens of thousands of our neighbors, the county once again chose to partner with Nascentia to launch the very first in-home vaccine program in New York in March 2021. Together, we brought critical vaccines to homebound and medically challenged individuals, with more than 2,000 doses administered to date. Today, Nascentia is still working closely with Onondaga County, arranging in-home testing and vaccines, and staffing pop-up clinics with personnel from both organizations. Working together, Nascentia and Onondaga County created a powerful team of responders to deliver critical screening and preventive care to our community.