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Requirements and Frequently Asked Questions

What is the minimum age for volunteers?
Volunteers must be at least 15 years of age.

What is the required time commitment?
Most placements require a minimum of one 3-hour shift per week. College/post-bacc/graduate students and adult volunteers must commit to at least 150 hours. High school students must volunteer at least 100 hours.

I am not a United States citizen. May I volunteer?
All volunteers must either be a United States citizen or have a Green Card. Because of labor and immigration laws, we are unable to accept applicants who are in the United States on visas.

What is the application Process?

The application package includes:

  • Volunteer Application
  • Confidential Reference
  • The reference must be completed by someone who knows you well, for example, paid or volunteer work supervisor, teachers or professors, your rabbi/priest/minister/imam or someone else who knows you in a professional capacity. References from relatives or personal friends cannot be accepted.
  • Medical Reference
    The medical reference may be completed by your physician after your interview, but within 10 days of your acceptance as a volunteer. In addition to attesting to your being in good health to volunteer, it requires proof of immunity to measles, mumps and rubella (German measles). A recent (no more than 2 months old) PPD test for tuberculosis test is also required of all volunteers. A current flu vaccine is also required of volunteers who are here between September and May. PPD tests and flu vaccines are available at no cost at Mount Sinai Beth Israel's Employee Health Department at no cost.
  • Medical Consent Form
    Required for applicants under 18 years old.
  • Copy of Working Papers
    Required for applicants under 18 years old. If you live outside of New York State, a copy of your birth certificate is acceptable.

I want to volunteer at Mount Sinai Beth Israel, but I don't have health insurance and can't afford to see a doctor who can complete your required medical reference form. What should I do?
You can go to a New York City Department of Health clinic if you don't have your own doctor. To find the location nearest your home, please call the city's non-emergency help line: 311.

Can anyone other than an M.D. complete my medical reference form?
Yes. The form may be completed by an M.D, physician assistant or nurse practitioner. It should not be completed by an R.N. (registered nurse).

I don't have a vaccination record--measles, mumps, rubella and varicella--and I can't afford to get the required vaccines. Can I still volunteer?
The New York City Department of Health can provide you with the required vaccines at no charge. (A note from your doctor is required for a chicken pox vaccine.) Please call the Immunization Hotline for NYC Department of Health: (212) 676-2273 to find the location of a vaccination clinic.

I understand that a flu vaccine may be required. I don't want to be vaccinated. May I still volunteer?
If you will be volunteering between September and May, a flu vaccine is required. You may not volunteer without one. Our Employee Health Services has non-egg based vaccines available to those with egg allergies.

I recently had a negative PPD test for tuberculosis done by my doctor. Do I have to have another test?
Maybe. If your PPD test was done within the past two months and you can give us the plant and read dates, size of reaction, manufacturer and lot number of the test, we'll accept this documentation. If you don't have this information, you need to get another PPD test.

I have had a positive PPD test for tuberculosis. Do I still need to be tested at Beth Israel?
Maybe. If you can provide us with the date and size of a positive PPD test reaction and a copy of a subsequent PA and lateral chest x-ray report we will waive the PPD test requirement. (Chest x-rays done by mobile van services cannot be accepted.) However, if you do not have this information, we will ask that you repeat the test at our Employee Health Services department.

I haven't had a recent PPD test for tuberculosis and my doctor can't do it. Can I still volunteer?
We can arrange for you to have a PPD test done at Beth Israel's Employee Health Service. If you test negative, you can begin volunteering. If you test positive, you'll need to speak with your doctor about getting a chest x-ray or we can refer you to a New York City x-ray clinic.

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