Addressing staffing shortages during the COVID-19 outbreak

This recent article by ECG Management Consultants reviews the tactics hospitals and health systems can implement during staffing shortages.

Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on ECG's website.

How will hospitals and healthcare organizations temporarily supplement their staffing to support the surge of suspected and confirmed COVID-19 cases that require hospitalization?

As hospitals prepare for an influx of patients, many are considering ways to increase their staffing, including securing locum tenens, extending traveling nurses’ contracts, paying extra shift bonuses, and canceling associates’ planned time off (in compliance with union rules at represented organizations).

Hospital leaders should consider the following additional tactics:

Implement emergency credentialing processes. Following the president’s declaration of a national emergency, CMS implemented the 1135 waiver program, which waives and suspends certain licensing restrictions aimed at temporarily increasing the pool of possible providers. In light of this, coordinate with freestanding outpatient and ambulatory centers and credential providers to care for acutely ill patients. Utilize off-site locations, along with their providers and staffs (many of whom are former inpatient acute care professionals), to care for patients without fevers or other COVID-19 symptoms. Click here to continue>>

 

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