MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — As the COVID-19 vaccine rollout continues to grow across the country, more and more retired nurses are coming out of their retirements, volunteering their time to help make it run smoothly.
About a thousand people come through the Mobile Civic Center today to get vaccinated, where several nurses are volunteering their time to help.
One of those volunteers is retired nurse Karen Ruckart. She’s been volunteering at the Civic Center once a week for the past month. She said she felt called to help.
“Hearing all the news and knowing what all was going on and knowing I had the skills to be able to do something to help people and hopefully make things better,” said Ruckart.
She was a nurse at USA Health for about 11 years; she retired two years ago. When the pandemic began, she knew she wanted to do something to help.
“I thought about those nurses going through those trying times you know just taking care of patients who were so so sick and watching patients die. That’s extremely hard as a healthcare professional, to watch a patient die. And knowing what those folks were going through I thought well surely there was something I could do to support them to get them one step further to not having to go through that everyday,” said Ruckart.
Ruckart knew USA Health had the vaccine, and started asking how she could get involved, ultimately going to help at the Civic Center. She says she enjoys talking with the patients coming to get the vaccine, as well as the nurses and other staff working at the site.
“There’s just a very positive attitude that people are doing something good for the community that progresses us on to get us through the pandemic,” said Ruckart.
She’s not the only one volunteering her time.
“That’s my calling and where I want to be, and I’m doing what I want to do,” said Gina Marymont.
Marymont is still a registered nurse, she started volunteering her time the first day the vaccines were offered at USA Health.
“Amazing experience, I know I’m getting just as much back as anybody getting the shot is rewarding for me,” said Marymont.
Both women say they’re grateful to be able to put their skills to use and help where it’s needed.
“Wherever there’s a shortage of man power, you just kind of fill in,” explained Ruckart.
USA Health is giving out vaccines at the Civic Center by appointment only. You can register with USA Health here.