LANSING, Mich. — Hundreds of people drive through Sparrow Hospital’s COVID-19 vaccination clinic each week.
This wouldn’t be possible without the many volunteers who step up and donate their time to give the vaccines.
Volunteers like this week’s Good Neighbor, Pat Munshaw.
Pat says it’s just one way she can give back.
“I tell people I'm the best vaccinator in the house," Pat said. "Now when I tell them that it’s between me and them, but they feel more comfortable when I say that to them.”
At 81 years old, Pat Munshaw came out of retirement to volunteer to administer COVID vaccines at both Sparrow Hospital and the Ingham County Health Department.
Since March, Pat has volunteered three days a week, spending her time doing what she says she has always been passionate about.
After graduating from nursing school at Marquette University, Pat worked as an RN for a few years at Lansing’s St. Lawrence Hospital before being recruited to become a nurse instructor. She then went on to get a masters degree in health care administration.
Pat says when she started volunteering this past March, she hadn’t given a shot in a very long time.
“The first time I worked with the Ingham County Health Department, I said I have not given a shot in 55 years, but I said I feel comfortable I used to teach them how to do this," Pat said. "I said it's like riding a bike. I said this is not brain surgery I can do this, but she did stand behind me to watch when I did the first ones.”
Lisa Denman is the Sparrow Vaccine Clinic Supervisor and says Pat is amazing!
“It's hard to get volunteers in here and Pat is here several times a week helping us," Denman said. "That’s huge for our community and the neighborhood, and it is extremely important. We need as many volunteers as we can get, especially with the booster vaccine. We're giving out more vaccines now. We really need everybody's help and she stepped up and has shown everybody how to do it.”
Sue Wagner is also a volunteer who often works alongside Pat. Sue says Pat is an inspiration.
“She is somebody who volunteers; I can't even count the number of boards she's on. And so, you know, it's really good that she's being recognized because she really gives a lot to the community," Wagner said.
“We need to tell this story because it encourages other people to volunteer," said Robert Kolt, chair of the Michigan Community Service Commission. "It's valuable, it's a good investment to the community, communities really fly with this strategy of volunteerism to solve problems. We've got a labor shortage, if we didn't have Pat Munshaw we would not be able to do as much as we have our many of the heroes that we're celebrating, and everybody has a different focus, a different area.”
Pat says she enjoys volunteering and is trying to recruit other retirees to help out, too.
“I just talked to a retired nurse today, and I said, you should be doing this as well," Pat said. "And so they said that they would contact Sparrow and do it. I mean, it is it is a wonderful rewarding thing to do. I mean as long as you are healthy and fit. Age is just a number, isn’t it?”
Pat Munshaw, for volunteering your retirement time to help give COVID-19 vaccinations and keep our community safe, you are this week’s good neighbor.
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