OHIO Medical and Nursing Students Fight COVID by Administering Vaccines to Peers, Community

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Ohio University medical and nursing students gained first-hand clinical experience while battling COVID by administering vaccines at OHIO’s Heritage Hall Vaccination Clinic to fellow students and the community.

“It’s so exciting to have the opportunity for Heritage College students to partner with their colleagues in the OHIO Nursing Program to give back to our community by helping with immunization efforts,” DONE said. “Not only is it a chance for students to directly provide care and to have an impact on the health of county residents, it is also an opportunity for interprofessional teamwork and a means for the University. from Ohio to support the incredible and dedicated team in the City of Athens. -County Department of Health. “

To attract student volunteers, Heritage College and the College of Health Sciences and Professions (CHSP) reached out to medical and nursing students who would be interested in distributing the vaccine and helping the OHIO community. Those interested then received online modules for training and an in-person session on the steps for delivering a shot, as well as entering it into the online system.

Many medical and nursing students have expressed an interest in volunteering for this historic event, so students work different shifts each day at the clinic.

“Distributing the vaccine has been extremely rewarding and exciting as a medical student,” said Kiran Philoria, a first-year medical student at Heritage College. “Being in a hybrid model last year, it was great to go out and get real-time clinical experience. It has been great to see people of all ages getting vaccinated, hopefully for a healthier community for all. Under the supervision of the nursing staff and the Department of Health of the City of Athens, I and many of my peers learned a lot about vaccines, technique and public health.

Philoria, from Columbus, added that the experience was incredibly immersive from a student perspective and heartwarming from a community perspective.

The clinics operated five days a week, with OHIO students able to receive their vaccine on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and the community clinic available on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Other students from CHSP, Heritage College, and the College of Arts and Sciences also volunteered their efforts in a non-clinical manner, serving as support for the Heritage Hall Vaccination Clinic by managing registrations, temperature checks and providing a on-site support. .

“I am grateful to the nursing program for giving me the opportunity to take on the position I am in today – giving the vaccine to my peers and the community,” said Andrew Bruno, a student. fourth year in nursing at CHSP. “I feel honored to be able to help, learn and actively practice what I am taught in the classroom. It is especially gratifying to be able to help our fellow students and those who are coming to college for the first time and who missed the course of the past year due to COVID. Being able to give them the vaccine and take a step towards immunity and normality in the herd was amazing.

All of the student volunteers worked side by side with the leaders and nurses of the City of Athens Department of Health (ACCHD), learning from them and lending a helping hand to those who have served the community since. the start of the pandemic.

“This immunization clinic has been a phenomenal partnership, where the borders of all of our organizations have collapsed for the pure good, trying to eradicate this global pandemic,” said Ken Johnson, DO, chief medical officer of the OHIO and Executive Director of Heritage College.

According to ACCHD, as of April 27, 36.04% of Athens County had received at least one dose of the vaccine. Overall, 10,449 first doses and 7,496 second doses of COVID-19 vaccines were distributed, with the majority of these doses being administered at Heritage Hall. To find immunization data related to Athens County, people can Ohio Department of Health Immunization Dashboard.

“At CHSP, our commitment to serving health is rooted in everything we do. Since January, our students, faculty and staff have volunteered their time and expertise to support OHIO’s collaborative community immunization effort, ”said CHSP Acting Dean John McCarthy, Ph.D. “Our nursing school has done a fantastic job preparing and enabling our students to play a vital role in OHIO’s student immunization efforts, and we are proud to have such a positive impact in this historic effort. public health.

Since the first vaccination clinic in January, the CHSP has provided more than 120 volunteers, clinical and non-clinical, with nursing professors and students who joined in mid-February. About 10 different nursing students were on site each day depending on their clinical group.

“The partnership with Ohio University has been critical to the success of the ACCHD immunization distribution plan,” said Ruth Dudding, director of community health and engagement at ACCHD. “We could not have achieved this success with the current distribution schedule without the help of students, faculty and nurses at OUHCOM, as well as help from staff at OhioHealth.



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