Banner Health seeks help from volunteers amid COVID-19 pandemic
Hospital officials say their biggest limiting problem at this point is staffing.
PHOENIX – – Banner Health officials say there is an urgent need for volunteers to help frontline workers in the ongoing and worsening COVID-19 pandemic.
Jeanne Ackerley is a volunteer. She says she wants to help in any way possible.
“A little shopping therapy on some days can go a long way!” said Ackerley.
Ackerley volunteers at the gift shop at Banner Baywood Medical Center, which has been remodeled for medical workers so it’s just one step away from what’s happening in the ICU.
“It’s a haven for the staff,” said Ackerley. “You’re taking a break. You can take a break from treatment and go to the gift shop. Lots of employees did Christmas shopping in the boutique.”
Banner Health officials say more volunteers are needed as intensive care units are 70% busier this year than they were last year.
“To support us in both nursing and hospitals and to support us at the three vaccination sites we currently have open in the state of Arizona,” said Marjorie Bessel, chief clinical officer of Banner Health. “It takes hundreds of people every day to deliver these vaccines.”
Volunteers must be under 65 years of age and have no health problems. You go through training and safety protocols. Banner officials also say volunteering could also question someone for COVID-19 vaccination in addition to health care workers.
“This includes doctors, newly hired employees and volunteers,” said Bessel. “If you work in a care setting that has patients, you are entitled to the vaccine.”
“As soon as we walk into the building every day, we’re in a COVID facility. I think it’s great that the vaccine is available to volunteers,” Ackerley said.
Banner officials specifically say they are looking for housekeepers, runners and screeners.
Banner Health Short Term Hospital Volunteers