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Illinois seeks help in fight against COVID-19

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HERRIN (WSIL) -- Illinois is taking desperate measures as more COVID-19 cases unravel in the state.

Last week, residents received a statewide emergency alert asking for the help of licensed medical professionals.

Jessica Stull, a licensed pharmacy technician in Columbia, Ill., applied hours after seeing the alert. "It's scary but I think it's going to take an army to take it down."

Stull hasn't heard back from the state since she applied last Tuesday. "I don't know if it's because I'm a pharmacy technician and they don't need pharmacy techs right now."

Herrin resident Karl Silge, a 2008 graduate of Chicago Medical School and 2018 graduate of USC Public Health, thinks he's more than qualified to help.

"I've got the residency, I have a letter from the program director saying I should be recommended for licensure," Silge said.

But an email from the state denied Silge's bid for a license because he previously didn't hold a license in Illinois or in any other state.

Silge says the state isn't looking at all of its options and is overlooking applicants with a wealth of experience.

"The state is accepting medical students who have had no experience with residency," Silge said. "And they're putting them to work."

Silge is keeping his options open. He's considering going to states with COVID-19 hot-spots such as California or Atlanta and doing all he can to help.

"We're going to need more doctors, I would like to go back," Silge said. "I feel obligated to go back into medicine as soon as I can to help out in this crisis."

To apply on the state's volunteer management system click here.

Danny Valle

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