Hospitals cutting services over staffing shortages

As hospitals across the U.S. face workforce shortages, several have had to halt some services. 

In the past month, at least three hospitals have announced plans to scale back care due to staffing issues. 

South Lincoln Medical Center in Kemmerer, Wyo., said it will stop providing labor and delivery services June 1, and the critical access hospital's operating room will no longer be open around the clock for emergency surgeries. Hospital leaders said the facility is scaling back services because it has been unable to recruit the number of surgical nurses needed to maintain a full surgical team all the time. 

In Pennsylvania, Delaware County Memorial Hospital in Drexel Hill plans to suspend outpatient services April 5 and intensive care and surgical services by the end of May. Hospital officials said the service suspension is necessary because of ongoing staffing issues. 

Schenectady, N.Y.-based Ellis Medicine paused overnight emergency care services at the Medical Center of Clifton Park (N.Y.), effective March 14. The health system attributed the decision to staffing issues. 

"The decision to temporarily pause overnight services stems from a lack of available emergent care staff as a result of the nationwide healthcare workforce shortage," Ellis Medicine said in a March 7 release. "Employee recruitment is of utmost priority at all Ellis Medicine locations, and Ellis is committed to restoring 24/7 emergent care in Clifton Park as soon as staffing levels allow."

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