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Volunteers return to Northwest Medical Center; one being a dog

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TUCSON (KVOA) - After more than a year away, volunteers are slowly returning to the Northwest Medical Center, including one special dog and its owner.

Scout and Rich Gillespie had to take a year off due to the pandemic. But now, they're making a comeback!

They have been coming to the hospital on Mondays and Thursdays to visit patients.

"Scout just jumps up … lays down and puts his head on my patient's lap," Tammy Rhein, a nurse at Northwest Medical Center said. "And I had not seen hope or happiness or joy in my patient since the diagnosis. And he teared and he cried, my patient, did, just out of joy that Scout was there."

"And someone even said he's picked up the morale since COVID. We needed him," Gillespie said. "But when he gets done from here he will take the biggest nap you ever saw. So he's tired."

The hospital says human volunteers are coming back with staggering return dates.

Volunteers are required to wear masks.

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