Nursing students help deliver COVID-19 vaccines - Los Angeles Times

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As a student nurse, Naomi Muñiz only took one real shot. However, she is still standing in Long Beach Memorial Hospital, preparing to vaccinate medical staff

—The experienced nurses lined up in front of her and the staff, "actually gold".

"I have full confidence in my technology," said the 23-year-old California State University Long Beach student. "You just need to pinch your arm on the deltoid muscle and straighten it like a dart."

However, she said: "I am afraid of doing it right."

By the end of her first class in December, she had injected 40 vaccines and joined an increasing number of volunteer nurses from California State University, at a time when health care professionals trained in vaccine management were in great need , They started their careers. .

Even in

Arriving in Los Angeles County: "Medical Heroes Needed".

"Is there any clinical time that needs to be made up? Are you ready to start working in your... public health community? Just want to be an amazing person and help California get rid of this pandemic?" California State University Northridge Nursing The head of the department, Dr. Rebekah Child, wrote to the students.

In the dark days of the pandemic "waves", there is an intensive care unit

And care

-Several hospitals in Southern California have exceeded their urgently needed staff and recruited a group of ready and willing student nurses who are willing to help


Officials warned that the ICU utilization rate in Southern California is 0% and the crisis is expected to worsen.

Muñiz just ended the intense semester rotation intensive care at Long Beach Memorial Medical Center. But on the first weekend of the winter vacation, she came back and vaccinated the staff in succession, putting her first clinical teaching activity into practice.

Muniz said: "This is not even a problem for me." "If they need help, and I can help, I will go in."

Sam Sherry, 35, a nursing student at California State University Northridge, volunteered to provide vaccines to Olive View-UCLA Medical Center employees this month and plans to volunteer again.

"This is really a cookie-cutter situation," said Shirley, who will graduate in May. "I am proud to be a nurse."

Sherry attended the flu vaccine clinic in October and said that the mechanism of the COVID-19 vaccine clinic is basically the same: there are multiple stations in a room, people come in for screening, they get vaccinations, and then they watch for signs of allergies. Then you send them to them.

"It's just a regular old vaccination clinic," Shirley said. But this is unusual in a pandemic.

"Even if you only shoot one person at a time, you still know very well that this is a pandemic that spreads all over the world," Sherry said. "Everyone is working hard to achieve this common goal."

The students also helped the vaccination site work in other ways, including disinfecting chairs between injections, transporting syringes, and putting band-aids on patients. Many medical staff who have been working on the frontline for several months ask for photos when they take photos.

The pandemic puts students on duty

, Teaching is transferred to the Internet. When the pandemic broke out in March, many hospitals opened their doors to students. They worried that the infection rate of the virus would become higher and higher, and personal protective equipment and staff time were also limited.

This poses a problem because students are usually required to complete theoretical and clinical courses at the same time, and a certain amount of clinical guidance must be spent on direct patient care.

For example, Muñiz was supposed to rotate intensive care and psychiatry last summer, but could not do so due to the pandemic. This postponed her planned graduation date from May to August this year, and it made her feel distressed because she remembered the burnout and stress that nurses are now experiencing.

She said: "I hope it helps in the whole process." "You are postponing the graduation of nurses.... I think it's useless."

The director of nursing uses the phone to call partner hospitals and institutions to seek help from students and ways to obtain clinical time.

Child, a 20-year-old nurse at CSUN, said: “When you know what attracts fans, the other hand that can complete the simplest task is really priceless.”

She asks students to help in clinics, screen patients and visitors in hospitals, and

. Now, Child is working with Los Angeles County to bring student nurses to the vaccination point on the campus of California State University Northridge.

"They gained clinical experience," Child said. "It also meets their inner needs-which is why most people start nursing-to help people."

Other southern California states, including Fullerton, Los Angeles and San Bernardino, have also cooperated with local hospitals and health authorities or are in negotiations to support vaccine work. They are also working hard to vaccinate their nursing students and coordinate with the State Board of Registered Nurses to spend time administering vaccines at the appropriate time to give students clinical or public health credit.

Jessica Lachman, a Long Beach State Nursing student who is about to graduate at the end of 2021, fired her first shot at the medical staff at the Long Beach Memorial last month-at 4 am, this was a volunteer work The beginning of more than 12 hours.

She said: "I am very dedicated and you are vaccinating the most important nurses and doctors in their field. It's a bit scary."

But she is eager to participate.

Rahman, 31, said: "I want to be a nurse, healthcare and helping others." "To be able to do something for people who work around the clock to take care of our community, this is calling me. This is great Experience."

Stacy In, a nursing student at California State University Northridge who supports other nurses who provide vaccines, said she feels part of a historic moment. Among the 42-year-old piano teachers, he has worked in cancer care for 18 years. He was inspired by cancer treatment and changed his career. She hopes to become an oncology nurse.

When talking about the marathon vaccination day at the Presbyterian Valley Hospital, “full of relief and hope.” “For me, witnessing this is very special....We didn’t do much that day. It was just there. ."

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Nina Agrawal is a writer for the Los Angeles Times. She previously reported for "WLRN-Miami Herald" and Latin American affairs magazine "The Americas Quarterly". Agrawal is a native of Southern California and graduated from the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of Pennsylvania and Columbia University and the School of International and Public Affairs.

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