As with any career or volunteer opportunity, there are requirements for becoming a volunteer nurse. You can contact the organization of your choice to learn about specifics. Generally, you will find the same types of requirements. Here is what you'll need to work with Doctors Without Borders as a volunteer nurse:
- A diploma or degree and current license that's related to the work you will do
- Recent direct patient-care experience
- Training in teaching, supervising or training
The following aren't required by Doctors Without Borders, but they come in handy:
- Training in infectious diseases (such as TB and HIV/AIDs), tropical medicine or public health
- Managerial experience
Many volunteering groups also require that you pass a background check.
The Texas Board of Nursing recognizes retired nurse volunteers as a special category under the medical volunteering umbrella. The requirements include being older than 65 years old, keeping current on licensing and training, and paying a fee of $10 for every two years you're with the program. Your state may also offer this type of volunteer authorization, so check with your local nursing board.
Once you have all of the requirements fulfilled, you might need special information to serve your patients. Read on to learn about volunteer nursing training.