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UL System, LSU seeking healthcare students, grads, active/retired workers to volunteer in COVID-19 crisis

Published March 27, 2020

The University of Louisiana System and LSU are partnering to mobilize healthcare students, graduates or active/retired members of the healthcare workforce to volunteer their time and talents through Louisiana Volunteers by signing up at www.COVID-19LAVolunteers.org. 

“It is our goal to leverage these volunteers as case managers and care coordinators to remotely and safely work with individuals with COVID-19 positive diagnoses, and to monitor patient conditions while under self-quarantine, said Dr. Ramesh Kolluru, Chief Innovation Officer for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and Vice President for Research, Innovation and Economic Development at the University of Louisiana-Lafayette.

Those with backgrounds in the fields of medicine, nursing, allied health professions, dentistry, pharmacy, counseling, mental/behavioral health, and laboratory science, among others, are being sought to volunteer for this statewide workforce augmentation effort.

“Using COVID-19 protocols from CMS (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services) and the Louisiana Department of Health, and in coordination with the healthcare systems, these volunteers will direct patients to specific hospitals in their communities, if and only when needed. We expect this will limit the number of patients showing up at hospitals/ERs, causing a significant burden on the healthcare system, while relieving patients and their families the burden of shopping around for hospitals with beds, staff, resources, and the ability to take in COVID-19 patients,” Kolluru said. 

Kolluru believes more than 9,000 healthcare students from Louisiana colleges and universities “are willing and able to join hands (figuratively speaking) with our amazing healthcare workers on the frontlines to help the state through this crisis.”

According to LDH, as of March 26, 2020, there were 510 additional cases of COVID-19, bringing the Louisiana total to 2,305. There are 83 deaths to date.

For more information or to volunteer, visit www.COVID-19LAVolunteers.org.