Published May 23, 2009
Do you have ER volunteers? If not why not? If yes, what do you have them do?
Thanks to those who respond.
DebanamRN, MSN, RN
pass meal trays
take people to the lobby
help make phone calls
and millions of other "little" things i can't recall.
i love each and every one of our volunteers!
ThrowEdNurse, BSN, RN
Our "volunteers" (use the word loosely) are premed students who come so they can put it on their applications/get credit, etc. They get in the way and are useless.
Nothing.Our "volunteers" (use the word loosely) are premed students who come so they can put it on their applications/get credit, etc. They get in the way and are useless.
Uh Oh! These are exactly who we were wanting to attract.
I love our volunteers, too, but I don't think they are premed students. they make beds, restock, transport, pass trays, and help out in any other way they can
Lunah, MSN, RN
Wow ... we don't have those at all! Must be nice.
Ours sit out in the WR and help with questions and help take visitors in to the maze of our dept....they are quite an asset actually.
crb613, BSN, RN
Ours help stock, get things like blankets, pillows for pts. Some are great....some are just in the way. There is one that will set at the triage window & say...are you having cp or soa? if so I will get you right back.....not at the window any more!
Our volunteers are mostly "senior" citizens who wipe the floor with the younger generation. Their energy and work ethic are to be emulated! When they arrive for the day, we thank our lucky stars.
I've actually been an ER volunteer through a program called Clinical Care Extender (CCE) that's located in Escondido, CA and in the Newport Beach area. Regular volunteers are pretty limited in what they can do (like, no contact with bodily fluids, no taking vitals, etc.) but the CCEs can actually do all of that. We have training and get hands-on experience by taking vitals, helping transport/feed/bathe patients, and when we're on the Med/Surg floors, we're right next to the CNAs helping them clean up patients. In terms of being in the ER, I'm usually up at triage taking vitals and leading new patients to their rooms. We clean up beds and rooms, make sure they're well stocked, and we're usually allowed to help the nurses and techs place leads, and make sure patients are comfortable as possible. We're even allowed to do chest compressions and help bag dead bodies that need to be taken down to the morgue. It's a little different from what the other volunteers get to do, but we definitely learn a lot and the hospital team really like having us on and think we're an asset. If you want more information about the CCE program, feel free to check out this website: http://copehealthsolutions.org/hwt/cce.html
I am all for volunteers, especially if they are students of the med profession, getting involved as much as possible. Things like taking vitals and bathing patients doesn't seem appropriate for volunteers. Truly I mean no disrespect. What I have come up with so far is:
Restocking linen and room supplies
Replenishing phlebotomy tray supplies
Assist a qualified paid staff member with patient transport
Escort family/friends to patient bedside or floor where admitted
Restock UA supplies in bathrooms
Run samples to lab when the pneumatic tube system is down
Restock procedure and disease brochures
Put together paperwork packages
Still adding to the list.
I can understand where you're coming from. All Clinical Care Extenders (CCEs) are age 18 and over. Most of us are college students or older adults who are getting their feelers out to see if the health profession is for them. For our younger volunteers in high school, they are certain restrictions in that they are not allowed to take vitals or see genitalia. All CCEs are trained for three days in basic anatomy/physiology and how to help hospital staff properly by medical/nursing students and administrators. The program sounds kind out of there for some, but that's what makes it so different. To each his own.
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