Candy Striper & Hospital Volunteer Career Profile
Candy Striper at Work
Candy Stiper Links
- How to Become a Candy Striper | eHow.com
How to Become a Candy Striper. If you are a teenage girl and thinking about a career in health care, you might want to become a hospital volunteer or candy striper at a local hospital. Becoming a candy striper is not only...
- Be a Hospital Volunteer - Childrens Hospital Los Angeles
- Candy Stripers & Junior Volunteers
The Modern Candy Striper; Hospital Volunteer
Healthcare professionals value the important role of the Candy Striper, or the more appripriate title, Hospital Volunteers. The name "Candy Striper" dates back to the days when the role was filled by women that wore red and white striped uniforms that resembled peppermint candy. The uniform had several incarnations, the most familiar to my age bracket being the cute pink and white dress, fitted with a belt and hat. In the past 15 years though, the role and the uniform has changed. Men and women are becoming volunteers and they are wearing standard medical uniforms with hospital ID indicating their position at the medical facility.
The modern candy striper is between thirteen and eighteen years of age and are typically female, because the role was originally created as a female job, but the number of men in the field is ever increasing.
These volunteers are integral to the success of the hospital, thanks to their interactions with both nurses and patients. Duties range, but are frequently constrained to clerical activities, as a result of insurance liability. Beginning candy stripers will typically spend time assisting in the reception area, working in the guest gift store, and in administrative roles for nurses in their stations. Volunteers are sometimes asked to make deliveries between facilities, or talk with patients that are in need of companionship, but typically these roles are only assigned those with proven trust and communication skills.
Candy Striper / Hospital Volunteer Duties
- One of the candy stripers most important duties is attending to patients. Overburdened hospitals don't have the resources to provide patients with frequent one-on-one care, past the necessary time spent diagnosing and treating.
- Candy stripers make a hospital visit pleasant by eating with, reading to, assisting or delivering items to patients.
- Seasoned volunteers are often selected for tasks that will allow him or her to learn more about a specific medical specialization like heart disease or cancer treatment.
- Experienced volunteers inspect and sanitize hospital rooms, deliver records and medication between facilities, and will transport lab specimens for testin.
Training and Application Process for Hospital Volunteers
Training for the job usually takes only a few days. Candy stripers are most frequently employed at teaching hospitals, because the volunteering experience allows pre-med and nursing degree grad students a chance to work with patients, while relieving the care staff of more menial duties. Many students volunteering at the hospital find the familiarity worthwhile, as it's one of the rare chances for a high school or college student to get a hands-on learning experience in a medical environment.
Lastly, there are several things you should do before seeking a volunteer candy striper role at the hospital. You'll need to complete an application, which includes references and parental consent if you're less than eighteen years old, and interview. Should you be chosen to volunteer, you will need to take a tuberculosis skin test and undergo a physical exam. This provides a level safety so you cannot transmit harmful germs or infections to your patients.
Hospitals count on candy stripers to be very reliable and is an important consideration when reviewing applications. Be sure that you leave time every week for volunteering, as the experience is impossible to replace for those interested in the medical field.
Volunteering takes dedication and responsibility
To make your experience as a candy striper the best it can be, you must make sure that you maintain first-rate behavior at all times, because your conduct reflects on the institution you work for. If you are able to observe all hospital policies, you'll be sure to get a great reference in the future.