LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - The need for health care workers is still high as the number of hospitalized patients remains in the hundreds.
Because of specialized treatment those patients require, Lubbock hospitals are trying to recruit more staffers.
The biggest issue hospitals have now is the number of workers in quarantine. At one point, those with University Medical Center reported around 200 employees were out, quarantined.
CEO of Covenant Medical Center, Chris Lancaster, said staff at his hospital are able to treat patients adequately but more help is still needed.
“We’re trying to hire as much as we can,” Lancaster said. “We’ve got positions open and (are) sourcing candidates.”
Covenant is constantly expanding its recruiting efforts to out of state and out of the country candidates. UMC is even offering higher signing bonuses.
This shortage of health care workers is not new. In fact, it has existed for years.
“What you see is, this kind of magnifies a global nursing shortage that we already had before the pandemic,” Lancaster said.
There have even been local retired nurses, and those who are out of the business, who have sought to try and get back into hospital work.
“We have nurses who, maybe, wanted to come back to work, but they’re no longer qualified for whatever red-tape reason,” UMC communications director, Eric Finley, said.
There is also a fear that health care workers sent by the State of Texas may leave soon, because of an increase in hospitalizations throughout the rest of the state.
“If resources get pulled from here, then obviously it means we have to scale back our capabilities of what we’re able to take care of,” Lancaster said.