How 3 New York hospitals are responding to staffing crisis

New York is being hit hard by the new coronavirus as the state's new cases double every three days. Amid the public health crisis, hospitals are being asked to boost capacity by at least 50 percent, and they now grapple with how to staff that additional capacity, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has requested that retired community, healthcare professionals who are licensed and registered reconnect with former employers and offer to work in case of staffing shortages during the pandemic. The governor said the state is also identifying National Guard medics for reserved staffing and working with medical schools to identify potential reserve healthcare workers. 

At the same time, some hospital systems are implementing their staffing plans to combat the virus, according to the Journal

Here are three plans reported by the newspaper.

1. An email viewed by the Journal showed that NYC Health + Hospitals/Bellevue hospital employees in New York City are being asked to volunteer for extra shifts, which could potentially involve triage and assessment of patient respiratory conditions and treating COVID-19 patients. The volunteers would be trained and receive direct supervision from specialists. 

2. Students at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, part of New York City-based Mount Sinai Health System, are being trained and deployed to do pharmacy support, help with blood donations and perform other work, the Journal reported. A medical student told the newspaper this also includes getting donations of personal protective equipment.

3. A spokesperson for Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City told the Journal the hospital has shifted nine nurses to the NewYork-Presbyterian health system, also based in New York City, for a two-week shift. Hospital for Special Surgery expects more workers to be deployed soon.

Read the full Journal report here


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