Fayette County Sheriff's Office activates Winter Care program

Posted at 5:39 AM, Jan 20, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-20 18:27:24-05

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — The Fayette County Sheriff has activated the transportation and prescription pick-up portion of the Winter Care Program.

Sergeant Antoine Palmer arrived promptly at 1:30 for his pick-up on Trent Boulevard. From there he’d be taking a Northpoint nursing facility employee on a short ride home to nearby Bainbridge Court. Fayette County Sheriff Kathy Witt activated the transportation and prescription drug pick-up portion of the Winter Care program, and her deputies are available to assist those in need of such help.

“If anyone is nervous about driving in icy conditions, or snowy roads we understand it. So we’re here to make sure they get to where they need to be, safely,” said Sergeant Palmer.

The program began in 2003 here in Lexington, when an ice storm crippled the city’s roads and made it nearly impossible for anyone to move around town. It was obvious this type of service was needed back then as people who were in dire need of their prescription medication either had to go without or find some other (and potentially more dangerous) way of reaching the local pharmacy.

The Winter Care program isn’t limited, however, to medication pick-up. The deputies can also take you to and from medical appointments, and your place of employment if you work in the healthcare industry. At Northpoint, a skilled nursing facility in Lexington, this service has been an enormous help.

“COVID has made it difficult for people to get to work, and so have the elements. The weather has made it even more difficult. They’ve partnered with us throughout the last two storms to get our staff at any hour,” said Elizabeth Thornton with Northpoint.

Sergeant Palmer wasn’t here in 2003 for that ice storm, but he’s been helping with this winter program for the last 15 years.

“Every day you get up and think what can you do to help somebody else,” Palmer said of his job overall, and more specifically, pitching in with the Winter Care program.

The distribution of winter coats and blankets is also a part of this program once Sheriff Witt puts it into action each winter. Sergeant Palmer said food delivery is also available for those in a tough situation when the weather makes it difficult to get out.

When this program is activated, the Fayette County Sheriff's Office provides the following services:

  • Travel to and from work for healthcare workers
  • Travel to and from critical medical appointments
  • Pick-up of emergency prescription medications
  • Welfare checks for the city's most vulnerable
  • Distribution of winter coats and blankets

If you, or someone you know, are in need of this help, call the Fayette County Sheriff's Office at (859)252-1771 and ask for Winter Care.