Commission on Aging to review COVID-19 lessons

The Clark County Commission on Aging has scheduled a discussion for next week that could offer some fresh insights on emergency responders and COVID-19.

During its regular meeting at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, the commission is set to hear from early and first responders about what they’ve learned during the crisis. Meeting guests will include Robert Milano — fire division chief of emergency medical services with the Vancouver Fire Department — and Jacleen Simons — regional preparedness program manager with the American Red Cross, Cascades Region.

“Many older adults, along with people of all ages, were not prepared for the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic,” reads a news release from the county. “There have been many complexities to navigate, from figuring out how to get groceries and wearing masks to quarantining or becoming ill. During many emergencies, the fire department is the first on the scene to address immediate problems and the Red Cross comes next to help with early needs like food, shelter and emotional support.”

In the past year, the commission has primarily focused on COVID-19 issues for seniors. Topics have included access to food and supplies, housing challenges and the impacts of isolation.

The nine-member volunteer group typically focuses on one issue per year and publishes an annual report on the county website. Last year, it shifted its attention after initially planning to discuss community engagement and advocacy.

Clark County Council Chair Eileen Quiring recognized the commission’s adjustment earlier this month in her State of the County address.

Commission meetings are broadcast on CVTV and

Viewers can also access the meeting Wednesday by going to or dialing 408-418-9388. The access code is 187 723 9853, and the password is apr21coa.

Jack Heffernan

Jack Heffernan

Jack Heffernan is a breaking news reporter and covers Clark County government for The Columbian.

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