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VUSM students helping vaccinate patients against COVID-19

Feb. 11, 2021, 1:49 PM


by Kathy Whitney

VUSM student Emilie Fisher giving a patient a COVID vaccination.

Vanderbilt University School of Medicine students will be rolling up their sleeves and pitching in to vaccinate patients against COVID-19.

Since the pandemic encroached on Nashville last spring, the medical students have been eager to be of service, said Amy Fleming, MD, associate dean of Medical Student Affairs. Many have helped with telehealth appointments, volunteering in the community and in myriad other ways.

“We know our students have a deep desire to be in service to the community. We have had an incredible number of students asking how they can help with COVID vaccination efforts. As we began piloting the process, early student vaccinators kept asking, ‘How can my colleagues sign up? How can I sign up again?’” Fleming said.

Students will be vaccinating patients in Light Hall and at Vanderbilt Health One Hundred Oaks. Residents and faculty have also been signing up to volunteer their time.

Medical students have training on giving injections within the medical school curriculum, however for this specific vaccination event students will complete a series of training modules online. On their first shift/day of volunteering they will be assigned to work with a nursing educator, who observes and teaches proper technique of the injection and then verifies they are able to give vaccines independently.

Students have piloted the process and since the call for volunteers went out last week, about 196 students have signed up to help.

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