Utah National Guard will help long-term care facilities

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(Utah National Guard Sgt. 1st Class Sean Conorich conducts rapid COVID-19 tests at Fairpark in Salt Lake City on Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021. Spenser Heaps, Deseret News)

(Utah National Guard Sgt. 1st Class Sean Conorich conducts rapid COVID-19 tests at Fairpark in Salt Lake City on Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021. Spenser Heaps, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Department of Health has requested assistance from the Utah National Guard Joint COVID-19 Task Force, and help is coming.

The task force has been activated, which means 50 service members will be deployed to assist in long-term care facilities across the state of Utah.

“Members of the Utah National Guard have provided invaluable assistance to the UDOH during the pandemic in multiple mission areas,” said Dr. Michelle Hofmann of the Utah Department.
Deputy Director of Health. “We appreciate their hard work and dedication.”

The rise in COVID-19 cases due to the omicron variant has led to staffing shortages in long-term care facilities as well as hospitals. The Guard will support facilities that need help until February.

Members of the guard who are assigned to assist will complete a two-day healthcare aide training course that is coordinated by the Utah Department of Health and Avalon Healthcare Group.

The course, Nurse Aide Training and Competency Evaluation Program, is approved by the Utah Nurse Aide Registry.

Upon completion of training, members of the Guard will be qualified to perform duties related to health care aides under the general supervision of a registered nurse.

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