The School of Nursing at IU South Bend’s Vera Z. Dwyer College of Health Sciences provided training this month for a dozen local retired medical professionals who have volunteered to help administer COVID19 vaccinations.
When Anna Milligan, a retired critical care nurse, asked me if the nursing school could offer this training, said IU South Bend Interim Assistant Dean of Nursing Barbara White, PhD, RN, CPN, CNE, I knew we had the faculty and facilities to do it. I asked a few faculty, and they were eager to help.
On January 13th, retired physicians, pharmacists and nurses attended an hour-long training taught by Clinical Assistant Professors Christine Hawkins, FNP, RN, MSN and Kristy Ludy, RN, MSN.
In the training, Ludy reviewed the mechanical skills of drawing up the medicine from a vial into syringe, finding the injection landmark on the arm and actually giving the injection, said White.
In addition, the group learned more about the vaccine from Hawkins. We knew that they would probably get questions from people about the vaccine, said White, so we wanted them to be prepared with knowledge about the vaccine, so they could answer those questions.
In the session, they were also prepared to respond to a reaction to the vaccine, reviewing basic CPR and how to use an automatic extended defibrillator and an epinephrine pen.
They really appreciated the skills training as well as the vaccine information, said White. It was a great way for School of Nursing to extend our reach beyond the campus into the community.
A licensing issue prevented Milligan from participating in the training, however, she and her colleague Judy Wein spread the word. Barb was so powerful, Milligan said. She and her team wanted to make sure the training was done properly. All the volunteers that attended the training are now on the schedule to administer the vaccine.
Grateful for the opportunity to help, White said, The vaccine is our first sign of hope since last March. This has been the hardest nursing care in the hardest of environments. It feels like there is finally light at the end of the tunnel.
If there is demand, White said the School of Nursing at IU South Bend is eager to provide additional training sessions for retired medical professionals. If interested, contact Barbara White at email@example.com or call 574-520-4475.