Volunteering at Columbia University Medical Center

NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center, a 700-bed facility located right off the George Washington Bridge, is one of the leading academic medical centers in the world, comprising the teaching hospital NewYork-Presbyterian and its academic partner, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia provides state-of-the-art inpatient, ambulatory and preventive care in all areas of medicine, and is committed to excellence in patient care, research, education and community service.

Patient Care Unit The volunteer’s role is to add an additional personal dimension of genuine concern and compassion to patients and their families, improve the quality of care, and to assist the staff as needed in the delivery of care. The volunteer, by letting patients and their families know that someone is concerned about their emotional and physical needs, and is there to assist in finding solutions to their concerns, can have a significant impact on the individuals perception of their hospital experience. Volunteers also provide an invaluable service by assisting the Nursing staff in fulfilling their roles and duties. Services Areas include: Medicine, Surgery, Neurology, Oncology, Cardiology, Transplant, Waiting Room, and ICU.

Available Monday through Friday, 7:00 AM – 11:00 PM

Emergency Department (ED) — Volunteers add a personal dimension by providing emotional support to the patients and their families in the waiting area. They provide genuine concern and compassion, and improve the quality of care by assisting the staff as needed in the delivery of care. Volunteers have a significant impact on the patient’s perception of the ED and hospital experience through the use of excellent communication and problem solving skills that can change what might otherwise be perceived as an impersonal environment, to one of empathy and consideration.

Available daily 7:00 AM – 11:00 PM

Golden Spoons — Volunteers provide support to the nursing staff and patients in need of assistance during meal times so that patients may meet their optimal nutritional goal. This helps improve clinical outcomes by providing companionship, social contact and stimulation during meals. Some patients encounter difficulties while eating, or being able to feed themselves. Golden Spoons is a truly collaborative effort to try and improve the health and wellness of our patients. Volunteers help prevent malnutrition, which has been associated with longer lengths of stay and higher rates of complications.

Available daily from 7:30 AM – 10:00 AM; 11:30 AM – 1:00 PM; 4:30 PM – 6:00 PM

Clerical — Volunteers will provide much needed general office assistance at the direction of departmental staff. Duties may include answering telephones, filing, data entry or light typing, labeling, running errands, etc. Pleasant personality and accuracy are important. Opportunities are available in various settings: clinics, nursing units, administration etc.

Available Monday through Friday, 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM

Columbia Patient and Family Advisory Council — Interested in sharing your perspective as a patient or family member at NYP-Columbia? Please consider joining the Columbia Patient and Family Advisory Council (PFAC.) We are a group whose mission is to enhance the delivery of care by converting issues and concerns into effective solutions leading to an improved patient and family experience. The group consists of patients, family members, doctors and staff who meet on the second Tuesday of every month.

Occupational/Physical Therapy — Volunteers assist therapists with follow-up phone surveys, appointment confirmation and patient registration. They greet patients upon arrival, and assist therapists with a variety of tasks such as setup/cleanup of the treatment area, organizing materials, assisting with treatment group, folding towels, sheets, and gowns.

Applicants must be currently attending OT/PT school or actively applying.
Available daily 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM

The NYP Guide Program — The NYP Guide Program is a program designed to reduce confusion that visitors have when navigating in the hospital. Volunteers help by navigating and at times walking with patients or visitors to the area of the hospital that they wish to visit. If you want to put a smile on someone's face, then this is the program for you! Training provided. Position does require that volunteer be able to stand for a period of time greeting patients and guests.

Available daily 8:00 AM – 8:00 PM

Gift Shop — The gift shop is looking for friendly, pleasant volunteers, who are able to stand for prolonged periods and could help put away stock, check and price new merchandise, stock gift cart, tag samples for display.

Available daily 9:00 AM – 8:00 PM

NYP Paws for Patients — NYP Paws for Patients allows volunteers, whose dogs are qualified with an approved organization, to engage with patients and staff throughout the hospital. Must be 18 years or older to participate and able to commit to at least two visits per month.

Available daily 9:00 AM – 9:00 PM

It is expected that all volunteers observe and respect the policies and procedures of NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital at all times. Volunteering on a weekly basis is a big responsibility. Please make sure this is a good time in your life to make such a commitment.