7 Best Hospital Volunteer Opportunities in Sacramento! (2022)

Sacramento has several state-of-the-art medical health and training centers.

Offering a chance to see the healthcare system from the inside out, volunteering at hospitals in the city can be a worthy endeavor.

In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the best hospital volunteer programs for Sacramento residents and visitors, as well as several more for those located in nearby California.

Hospital Volunteer Listings in Sacramento

Name Postal CodePhoneWebsite
Dignity Health: Mercy General Hospital95823(916) 453-4559dignityhealth.org/volunteer-at-mercy-general
Dignity Health: Methodist Hospital 95823(916) 681-1702dignityhealth.org/volunteer-at-methodist-hospital
Sutter Medical Center95816(916) 887-4377sutterhealth.org/smcs
Thrive (Kaiser Permanente)(916) 688-2416kaiserpermanente.org/volunteer-services
UC Davis Health Medical Center95817(916) 734-2401health.ucdavis.edu/volunteer
Clara’s House95816(916) 448-3976clarashouse.org
Sacramento County Volunteers 916-875-5656saccounty.net/VolunteerHealthCare

Dignity Health: Mercy General Volunteers

Dignity Health, the fifth-largest health system in the nation and the largest hospital provider in California, runs two of the larger hospitals in Sacramento. 

Volunteers are an integral part of the staff at Mercy General, and the hospital welcomes teens, college students, working adults, and retirees. Most serve one 3-4 hour shift per week. 

There is an extensive volunteer handbook available online for those interested. Mercy General offers traditional volunteer opportunities (the Guild Volunteers), providing services and assistance to patients and families, working in the gift shop, Information Desk, and Medical Plaza Information Desk. 

Mercy General also has more elaborate training-required volunteer postings. 

The Readmission Reduction Program aims to support patient wellness, and volunteers work with hospital caseworkers. The Emergency Department volunteers are valuable indirect-care providers. Spiritual Care Eucharistic Ministers are responsible for “bringing the Holy Eucharist” to patients and families, providing spiritual support, and praying with families.  The No One Dies Alone (NODA) program provides “compassionate companionship and comforting support to dying patients.”

Check out the video below for more on how Dignity Health works with its hospital volunteers…


Dignity Health: Methodist Hospital Volunteers

Methodist has been using volunteers for 45 years, and they encourage young and old to volunteer to meet new people, network and give back to the community. 

Methodist Hospital uses volunteers in traditional volunteer roles: floor help, help desk, ER, and gift shop. They also have a Doula program and a Pastoral Care program

Methodist Hospital also has a long-term care facility, Bruceville Terrace. Both adult and junior volunteers work very hard to make life more enjoyable for the Bruceville residents by participating in resident outings, pet therapy, meal assistance, rehab support, newsletter writing, and Adopt-a-Grandparent. 


Sutter Medical Center

While the volunteer program is currently on hold (both orientation and on-boarding) due to COVID, Sutter Medical Center utilizes around 500 volunteers to help touch the lives of their patients. 

Sutter Medical has positions in administrative support, surgery waiting room help, the doula program, and the intriguing “Birth Story” program

Sutter Medical also uses volunteers with their hospice care, supporting terminally ill patients “as they approach death as a process, not an event.” (This program requires a separate application.)

Sutter Medical typically needs volunteers in these areas (and many more):

Non-clinical support: Cart with a Heart, Healing Music, Stroke Program Phone Follow-up, Pet Therapy, Visitor Navigation

Clinical support: Antenatal Testing, Infusion Therapy, Post-Anesthesia Care Unit, Bone Marrow Transplant, Pharmacy

Here’s more on Sutter Medical Center’s volunteers…


Kaiser Permanente Thrive

Kaiser Permanente runs 6 state of the art medical facilities in the South Sacramento area, and Thrive is their volunteer organization, which places volunteers at their various locations based on need and the volunteer’s location. They ask for at least one shift per week for one year and attendance at quarterly team meetings. 

Kaiser Permanente Thrive volunteers also get some nice perks, such as social events, pharmacy discount, and eye services discount. 

Kaiser Permanente Thrive has many volunteer roles available: information desks, errands services, ambassador, recovery room, pet therapy, No One Dies Alone, Craft Corner, and Health Sciences Library. 

If you are unable to volunteer your time, Kaiser Permanente Thrive facilitates donations of yarn, thread, cards, pillow stuffing, fabric, and new books, magazines, and DVDs. 

Check out the video below for more on how Kaiser helps the local Sacramento community…


UC Davis Health Medical Center

UC Davis Health includes the School of Medicine, the School of Nursing, the Medical Group, and the Medical Center.

UC Davis uses over 1,000 volunteers each year through a number of programs:

The Community College/University Outreach Program allows college students to improve their knowledge of healthcare professions while exploring different roles. 

Hospice Care involves supporting patients and families “who are going through the dying process.” 

Pets Helping Us Recover (PHUR) brightens the days of designated patients with a special visit. (This role requires special training of dog and owner.)

The Kiwanis Family House provides housing for families who live outside a 35-mile radius of the Medical Center. 

The VolunTeen program is designed to familiarize high school students with various healthcare occupations. 


Clara’s House

Clara’s House is a non-profit, no-cost clinic for people without health insurance. They offer health monitoring and education in addition to adult primary care medical services. Clara’s House also boasts 1170 volunteer hours per month, so they are ready to place you and they need your help. In fact, their entire staff is made up of volunteers. 

Current or retired health professionals, translators, front desk, greeters, referral and appointment helpers, and application and billing issue helpers are all needed on a regular basis. Let Clara’s House know what your strengths are, and they will match you to a volunteer spot. 

Clara’s House places both short- and long-term volunteers. Volunteers must be able to commit to 4 hours a week and must have basic computer skills. Email them to schedule a pre-interview. 


Sacramento County Volunteers

The government of Sacramento County needs volunteers to help expand care to the underserved and to help people in need remain active and independent. Contact the Volunteer/Student Intern Services Office ((916) 875-2027) for more information and an application. 

Volunteers can serve in the following capacities: 

Clinical assistants – these volunteer positions vary from location to location, and volunteers provide clerical assistance and gain experience in a clinical setting. 

SPIRIT Project – medical practitioners with current licenses can volunteer at County clinics or through their own offices under the auspices of the Sacramento Physicians Initiative to Reach Out, Innovate and Teach.

RSVP – The Retired Senior Volunteer Program connects senior volunteers with opportunities in hospitals, lifeline services, services for the blind, and the Blood Source. Volunteers can also provide educational information to the public about cancer, arthritis, and diabetes. 


Related Questions

Why Be A Hospital Volunteer In Sacramento?

Volunteering in hospitals and clinics can have a positive impact on the community.

The skills, connections, and friends you make in any of the roles above, are something that’ll stay with you for a long time.

The experience also looks great on applications for healthcare-related degrees and helps you impress any relevant admissions boards.

Can I Be A Baby Cuddler Volunteer In Sacramento?

There are baby cuddler volunteer opportunities at the following organizations:

  • Sutter Medical Center

You can find more information about both these hospitals (and their other volunteer programs) in the article above.

You’ll also need to match the eligibility criteria and undergo screening successfully before being accepted onto baby cuddler volunteer programs!

Who Are These Sacramento Hospital Volunteer Opportunities For?

These opportunities are broad and open to people from all backgrounds.

Summer programs are generally for high schoolers looking to get a taste of healthcare fields while general volunteering positions are available to both students and professionals.

Check that you meet the criteria and eligibility for each opportunity first.

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