Community residents encouraged to apply to help in various clinical areas
COVID-19 stopped us all in our tracks. For hospitals and health systems around the country, that meant volunteers were no longer allowed.
The University of Texas Medical Branch was no exception. Due to the pandemic, the Health System did not allow volunteers in its clinical areas from 2020 to 2022. Prior to 2020, UTMB had more than 400 volunteers throughout its campuses. Currently, it has only about 150 active volunteers in total.
“I can’t stress enough how important it is that we bring more volunteers to our clinical areas,” said Holly Jolin, administrative manager for Volunteer Services at UTMB. “The value of the support they provide is immeasurable. We consider them invaluable parts of the team here at UTMB and encourage anyone who is caring, compassionate and friendly with a heart for helping to volunteer.”
Volunteers are needed across all UTMB campuses in a number of clinical service areas, including:
- Acute Care for Elders (ACE) Geriatric Unit—Seniors serving seniors by serving as a listening presence, helping diffuse loneliness, and bringing comfort and companionship.
- Clerical Support Team—Clerical assistance may include answering phones, preparing charts, sorting and filing records, distributing mail, copying, running errands between departments, shredding, assembling packets, mail outs, and/or other light duties.
- Coffee Cart—Delivering complimentary coffee and other beverages to waiting areas.
- Emergency Room and Trauma Center—Greeting new patients in the Emergency Department, answering phones, monitoring the information desk, providing patients and visitors with needed information and directions to campus services and locations, etc.
- In-Patient Nursing Units—Answering phones, patient call lights, and other light clerical and nursing unit duties, as well as interacting with designated patients to offer companionship, encouraging patients to eat, filling water pitchers and/or reading.
- Library Cart Volunteer—Offering complementary books and magazines to patients and their guests
- Navigator—Greeting and guiding patients and visitors throughout the hospital and clinics.
- Pediatric Medical/Surgical Unit - Playing games and making art with pediatric patients in the children’s playroom.
- Animal/Pet Therapy—Taking pets for short visits to patients, staff and students to help relieve stress, depression and anxiety.
The Health System is looking for adult volunteers ages 18 and older and junior volunteers ages 15-17.
Additional information regarding the certification requirements can be found at utmbhealth.com/volunteer.