eISSN: 2449-8580
ISSN: 1734-3402
Family Medicine & Primary Care Review
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2/2021
vol. 23
 
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abstract:
Original paper

Organization of volunteers in the healthcare system and the type of services provided by them during the COVID-19 pandemic

Peygham Heidarpoor
1
,
Mahmood Maniati
2
,
Maria Cheraghi
3
,
Maryam Beheshtinasab
4
,
Poorandokht Afshari
5

1.
Virtual School of Medical Education and Management, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
2.
School of Medicine, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran
3.
Department of Social Dentistry and Oral Health, School of Dentistry, Social Determinant of Health Research Center, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran
4.
School of Nursing and Midwifery, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran
5.
Reproductive Health Promotion Research Center, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran
Fam Med Prim Care Rev 2021; 23(2): 169–173
Online publish date: 2021/07/06
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Introduction
In the event of accidents and disasters, the presence of volunteers, if not organized, can sometimes worsen the situation instead of improving it. This research was aimed at the ways of organizing volunteers in the healthcare system during the COVID-19 pandemic in the southwest of Iran.

Material and methods
This questionnaire-based descriptive study was conducted on 140 volunteer health workers either active in providing services to COVID-19 patients or on the waiting list. The participants were selected using convenience sampling. They completed the information form, which was analyzed after collection using SPSS version 22.

Results
The 140 volunteers’ mean age was 32.5 with a standard deviation of 7.5. Of these volunteers, 62.1% had volunteered to serve since the first days of the outbreak. According to the participants of this study, the management of volunteers was spontaneous under the supervision of the official and state system, and the vast majority of them considered the official healthcare system’s reception of volunteers as positive but saw the bureaucracy as a major obstacle to recruiting volunteers, especially nursing and midwifery graduates. Finally, the participants’ motive for volunteering was found to be a sense of personal responsibility and human duty.

Conclusions
Proper planning, organization and management of volunteers in an epidemic situation should be taken into account by healthcare officials in order to receive the highest efficiency in times of crises such as the COVID-19 pandemic.

keywords:

delivery of health care, volunteers, COVID-19, pandemics

 
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