Our Drive-Up Testing Site: Teamwork and Camaraderie during COVID-19
When the threat of COVID-19 sidelined medical student Taylor Wahrenbrock from third-year rotations in March 2020, she donated her time to Children’s National Hospital. She has worked three days a week at our drive-up testing site — the first of its kind in our region — since it opened. The site provides a convenient and safe option for pediatricians to identify children who require quarantine and care. It also limits the number of families who visit local emergency departments for COVID-19 testing.
Taylor and other volunteers help with logistics, complete paperwork and answer families’ questions about the testing process. Volunteers also support the clinical groups performing swabs and lab techs processing specimens. Interpreters assist families who don’t speak English.
“I’m working alongside an outpouring of nurses, physician assistants, techs, pathologists and non-clinical people from the hospital who showed up to help,” Taylor says. “Children’s National is clearly more than a job to them. They go out of their way to take care of the community every day, but are working even harder during this pandemic.”
Taylor also has seen has seen the community rally on behalf of Children’s National. One grateful mother drove all the way home and back again to donate boxes of N95 masks that she had. Other generous donors provided funds to cover testing for families without insurance or who can’t afford it. Other donors had lunch delivered for volunteers and staff.
“As a student, volunteering at this testing site has taught me the importance of working with generous and creative people,” Taylor says. “At Children’s National, teamwork and camaraderie is everywhere.”