Volunteer FAQs

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Volunteer FAQs

Will volunteers receive the COVID-19 vaccine?

While we anticipate volunteers will be eligible for vaccinations, the availability of vaccines for volunteers will be determined on a clinic-by-clinic basis. Volunteers are not required to be vaccinated before working at a clinic.

Is there an age requirement for volunteering? 

We are asking that volunteers be at least 18 years of age and be able to independently perform the role for which they are volunteering. Those with specific questions are encouraged to contact us at  VaccineCorpsHelp@umassmed.edu.

Will there be a clinic in my area? 

We expect to be providing support for clinics as they are planned throughout the state. While we are focused on the central Massachusetts region right now, we are already receiving inquiries from other areas of the state. 

What should I wear?

Volunteers are encouraged to dress in business casual attire, no jeans. White coats are not necessary. Identification badges will be provided and must be worn by all volunteers throughout the clinic. 

How long are shifts?

Shifts will vary in length based on the needs of each clinic.  During the scheduling for each clinic, volunteers will be provided with options that are available and will be able to choose those that fit their schedule. 

Will PPE be provided?

We encourage all volunteers to arrive with masks; all other necessary PPE will be available on site.

Sick or Exposed to SARS-CoV-2, what should I do if I’m feeling ill?

Please do not come to the clinic if you are sick. If you are acutely ill (i.e., difficulty breathing), call 911 immediately. Otherwise, check your symptoms online here. If you cannot volunteer for your scheduled date and time, please email VaccineCorpsHelp@umassmed.edu as soon as possible. You may register for another volunteer opportunity when you are available.

Which students are eligible to volunteer?

There are roles available at most events for any student who wishes to contribute to this effort. Registering patients for vaccination is equally as important as administering vaccinations. On-site educators can answer important questions for patients, and vaccine preparers make sure our available doses are efficiently drawn up and ready to use by vaccinators.

Are volunteers provided malpractice insurance? 

Malpractice insurance is not provided to volunteers. Volunteers in this program are covered under the PREP Act.  For further information on how this legislation protects you from malpractice claims, please review the information found here: https://www.phe.gov/Preparedness/legal/prepact/Pages/prepqa.aspx. 

CORI and credential validation 

After registering at https://commed.umassmed.edu, our team will validate information for all volunteers.  If any further information is required, we will reach out to you via email.   

For more information about COVID-19 and the vaccine, please go to www.mass.gov/COVID-19 and www.CDC.gov.

Will you assign volunteers to a shift / how will scheduling be completed?

Before each clinic, our team will evaluate the overall need for volunteers. Following this evaluation, we will communicate to individuals who have registered to provide details on the clinic and associated volunteer needs for that clinic. At that time, you will have the option to sign up to volunteer at that clinic. Further information will be provided to volunteers following registration and as each clinic is scheduled. 

We expect to be providing support for clinics as they are planned throughout the state. While we are focused on the central region right now, we are already receiving inquiries from other areas of the state.

What roles can I fill as a student volunteer?

Student volunteers are essential to making sure that vaccination clinics run at full capacity. Students can therefore fulfill many roles as part of their volunteer efforts. Below is a brief description of each of these roles. Students should not work outside of their comfort zone and scope and should always ask questions when necessary.

Vaccinator: Trained medical or nursing students will be administering the SARS-CoV-2 vaccine to the community with, and under the supervision of, licensed professionals.

Patient Registration: Students may be responsible for prescreening individuals, distributing vaccination cards, and inputting data into the clinic information system.

Monitor: Students who hold an active Basic Life Support (BLS) or Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support (ACLS) Certification can help monitor patients after their injections for any signs of adverse effects.

Educator: Students may serve as educators on-site to answer questions about the vaccine. Students should be ready to discuss pre-made educational materials that may touch upon the efficacy, mechanism, and/or safety of the vaccine.

Vaccine preparer: Under the direct supervision of a licensed professional, students may volunteer to prepare vaccines by filling syringes from vaccine vials, so they are ready for use by vaccinators. This is an essential job as it determines the amount of vaccine clinics can use from each vial and is often the rate-limiting step at mobile clinics – you can be trained on-site to do this.

Register to volunteer