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Volunteers help out at COVID-19 vaccine centers in exchange for an early vaccine

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Salon, January 2021

On Drew Zipp’s first day as a volunteer at the COVID-19 vaccination center at Broadbent Arena in Louisville, he wasn’t sure what to expect. Perhaps, as someone who doesn’t work in the medical field, the first four-hour shift would be a training — or perhaps he would file paperwork. Instead, to his surprise, he was right in the middle of the action.

Zipp watched the pharmacists load up syringes with the Moderna vaccine on to a tray. Then the 42-year-old Zipp took the tray and ran it to one of the five injection stations, handing it to the medical professionals who conducted the inoculations.

“I was a little surprised in some ways,” said Zipp, whose day job is as a designer (and, full disclosure, is married to Salon’s Editor in Chief, Erin Keane). “I thought I’d be arranging paperwork, directing traffic or something a little bit less critical on day one, but it was like, ‘nope, someone’s going to carry these from the loading station to the injector people.'”

While Zipp said he’s happy to help his community, there is another incentive that will keep him coming back for another nine shifts: getting bumped up higher on the vaccine list. “If you work for 40 hours, which would be 10 shifts, then you can get on a list to then get the vaccine,” Zipp said.

Continue reading at Salon.

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