After hearing that there may be a shortage of people to give you the COVID-19 vaccine, Florida nurses did their best to help out. The Florida Nurses Association is volunteering to vaccinate others and about 100 are right here in Southwest Florida.
As if a 40-hour workweek wasn’t enough, registered nurse Jose Castillo now drives to different counties in Florida to help other nurses vaccinate their communities.
“It is so heart touching. I have to look away at times when they thank you because they’re about to cry and I don’t want to participate in the emotion, but I really want to get the job done,” Castillo said.
Gov. Ron DeSantis asked the Florida Department of Emergency Management to bring in nurses to help vaccinate, and “from then on we rose from 50 to now almost 1,000 volunteers in the state,” Castillo said.
Almost 1,000 nurses across Florida to help with these vaccinations and that means so much to so many.
“Throughout the line, there were people crying because they said their lives were back,” Castillo said.
He said walking up to the vaccination site for the first time was one of the most impactful moments of his 30 years in the medical field. Knowing that, inside the white tents, hundreds of vials could bring back precious moments for so many.
“I can’t even imagine how they’re feeling when you have not seen your kids throughout the holidays, your grandchildren and relatives through this season,” Castillo said.
Those moments are what makes the extra hours worth it for Castillo and so many other nurses.