Our babysitter is taking classes to work in a hospital as a phlebotomist. She needs to do an internship--which is one week of volunteer work in the hospital.
Here are the hurdles anyone needed to jump through back in the day when I was a volunteer in the Children's ER in Oakland, California:
- Proof of immunity to measles
- Proof of vaccinations according to the standard schedule which wasn't very many -- DPT, polio, measles
- Declaration of having had chicken pox or not
- Skin test for tuberculosis (PPD)
- Fill out one volunteer application with two letters of reference
Today, this is what is required to do any kind of work in a hospital setting:
- Proof of completion of series of Hepatitis B vaccines
- Skin test for tuberculosis (PPD)
- Blood born pathogen computer training complete (BBP)
- Patient privacy computer training complete (HIPAA)
- Completion of a drug test
- Proof of vaccinations according to the standard schedule--I counted nineteen from the CDC
- she has communication between her school and the hospital--the school assigned her to the position. Others would need to complete applications for the type of work involved.
Once IN the hospital, when I was there in 1990, I needed a name badge. A little pin with my name and the word 'volunteer' on it.
Now you will need a badge that will let you in to the areas of the hospital you are allowed to go. They can track you with it too. The doors all have card readers, and to get in you must have the access code embedded in your badge. Typically, OR nurses do not have access to ICU. So when we bring patients directly to ICU, I'm the one who has to open the door. The PACU nurse has access too. But not the circulator in the OR.
It's that tight.
Once you are in the hospital, there is closed circuit monitoring of every inch of the hospital, including the storage rooms with supplies. Everything is on camera.
I used to be a little cheeky and wave at the cameras when I was in residency every time I walked by. Give my biggest smile and most energetic wave hello to give the security team a smile and let them know I knew I was being watched. I'd only do it when I was alone and nobody else was looking...
I wouldn't recommend doing that now if you are a volunteer. They'd think you are loony and throw you out. People have no sense of humor any more, seriously!
I wouldn't be surprised if for actual employment there was a background check, and also, a credit check too. Hospitals don't want trouble. I know of one embezzler from the cafeteria they found when she went on vacation. All this money suddenly turned up that usually wasn't there when they cashed out the registers...hmmmm!
Does Reiki belong in hospitals?
I think so, yes.
Do healers, balanced healers of every type belong in a hospital?
I think there is a benefit to those who know the culture and are already in the system. It's like the army--there's a certain way to act. Most importantly there are times when things are going south for a patient, it can happen suddenly, and a good hospital staff needs to know when to do their job and when to get out of the way for others to do THEIR jobs to save the patient. There is no time for 'deer in the headlights' when a crisis arrives.
So anyhow, I was sharing with you the steps. It's hard to imagine how much things have changed in the course of my career. I loved being a candy striper, and it made me who I am clinically today. The bedside manner began forming back then, the team player in me started to show itself back then, and the heart started to OPEN OPEN OPEN for the patients and their families back then too.
Just know that any volunteer for anything, and any employment, who is planning to be part of the team who works inside the hospital--even for free as a volunteer--isn't allowed IN until the criteria are satisfactorily met.
It's just the way it is.
Aloha and Mahalos,
Ross and Carla
The Founders of Doctors With Reiki