Austin-based veterinary group affords 8,500 volunteers to CDC to distribute vaccines

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The Pathway Vet Alliance has locations in 37 states. The CEO sent a letter to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday.

AUSTIN, Texas – The Pathway Vet Alliance, a national veterinary hospital group with headquarters and offices in Austin, sent a letter to the United States. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and dozens of governors, including Governor Greg Abbott, provide 8,500 veterinarians to assist with vaccine administration when needed. Pathway has more than 390 locations in 37 states.

“I already feel like we have the best job on the planet because we can serve people by taking care of their pets. And how cool it would be if we could serve our pets by taking care of their people To take care of?” Stephen P. Hadley, CEO of Pathway Vet Alliance, DVM, told KVUE. “This is pretty exciting for us, whether they ask us about it or not. It’s a real deal and we’re excited to be doing our part to bring this under control.”

Hadley said in the letter to the CDC that they are ready to do whatever it takes to help the U.S. healthcare system meet required coronavirus vaccination goals for the population.

In the letter, Hadley mentions how the CDC director circulated the idea in an interview with a national news broadcaster, and it is at that point that Pathway decided to take the initiative to offer its services.

“At that suggestion, I immediately gathered our management team to discuss the opportunity and we decided to offer our facilities and staff,” said Hadley.

According to Hadley, Pathway was already offering use of its ventilators to hospitals in the US in April 2020.

“A lot of people don’t understand that our devices are human devices, so our ventilators are human ventilators. There are some made specifically for different types and the like, but for the most part our CTs, our MRIs, our linear accelerators for advanced radiation therapy they are all used human machines, “Hadley said. “It was pretty scary at the time. We thought there was going to be a real shortage of ventilators, so everyone was trying to figure out what we could do and we offered ours. I’m not aware that anyone was pointing us out addressed, but it was a real offer. We had hospitals that were prepared and ready to go. Here, too, we’re happy to be a reserve. “

In the letter, Hadley said he knew the details of how this would work would need to be ironed out, but that would be a matter for the CDC and the numerous local, state and federal agencies that Pathway has reached out to.

“With the aggressive move of vaccinating 100 million people in 100 days, we wanted to publicly show our support and offer to help in any way we can,” said Hadley.

When it comes to giving people vaccines, Hadley says members of the veterinary team give injections all day and he believes that shooting different types of species is much harder than shooting a human.

“I think we would be well prepared to do these training programs and make sure we understand all the nuances,” said Hadley. “The anatomy and physiology are very similar.”

In Tuesday’s COVID-19 update with Austin-Travis County leaders, Dr. Mark Escott points out the possibility of vets handing out the vaccine.

“When we look at the startup and scaling efforts, we have to look at different options,” said Escott. “We are fortunate to have a large healthcare workforce here. When we see hospital admissions decline, it will increase the availability of traditional healthcare providers to help with vaccinations.”

Escott mentions that Austin-Travis County has 2,000 first responders, rescue workers, and Austin Fire Department members who have credentials and can help with vaccinations. The city and county also have the option to hire nursing students and medical assistants to administer vaccines.

“Of course we will keep all options on the table,” said Dr. Escott.

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