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As one of Sports Illustrated’s newest swimsuit models, Maggie Rawlins is setting pulses racing.
But Rawlins, 28, can help with that blood pressure spike — she is a registered nurse.
The South Carolina native, who has modeled for lingerie brand Intimissimi and landed the October cover of Elle Croatia, worked in a Queens medical facility during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic last spring.
“I was working in LA, and I booked a flight back [to South Carolina] thinking it would be a month or so,” Rawlins told The Post. Then the call went out for nurses, so she immediately raised her hand and headed to New York City at the end of March 2020.
“I had the skill set as a nurse, and it was a responsibility more than anything else . . . You just hit the ground running. There were a lot of obstacles.”
Asked if any patients or co-workers knew of her day job, she said: “Absolutely not. And I don’t think anybody would have cared at that point.”
The 5-foot, 7-inch Rawlins was scouted for modeling as a teen. But she always wanted to become a nurse, like her grandmother who worked overnights in labor and delivery. After finishing school, she was working as a hematology oncology nurse in South Carolina when a Miami agency reached out.
“At first I thought it was a bit of a scam, but my nurse manager said to go for it. She said to keep my license active, and if I didn’t like it, I could always return,” she said.
Rawlins maintained her credentials by volunteering with nonprofit OneWorld Health, and has traveled to countries such as Uganda and Nicaragua, working as a triage nurse, before jumping back in to help the pandemic-ravaged NYC.
And in December, Rawlins, who is married to her childhood neighbor George Douglas III and now lives in Manhattan, got another life-changing call: She’d been tapped to pose for the prestigious bikini bible.
“I had no idea I was even on SI’s radar. I got a call from my agent saying I was up for it. Then two hours later, he said, ‘You’re confirmed for Sports Illustrated, and you’re shooting in three weeks,’ ” said Rawlins, adding that she had been indulging in red wine and had to quickly bounce back into shape.
“I did a lot of at-home Pilates and the Sculpt Society app with Megan Roup,” said Rawlins, whose favorite SI swim models are Kathy Ireland and Elle Macpherson.
She hopes this bikini-baring moment brings attention to health-care workers.
“I want to stress that I was only there for three weeks, which is nothing compared to the sacrifices they have made,” she said, adding, “COVID hasn’t stopped for them.”
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