It’s Time to be PROACTIVE Rather than REACTIVE to Staff Your Facility

When Covid-19 reached pandemic status in early-March, it created the perfect storm tocause further upset to an already struggling healthcare system. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics the need for RNs was increasing rapidly, at a rate of more than 200K  annually, because of the aging Baby Boomer population. While keeping up with the pre-Covid demand was taxing for many facilities, keeping staff in place during the pandemic became even more unmanageable.

In preparation for Covid-19, hospitals and medical centers were forced to delay or cancel the financially healthier part of their enterprise: elective and out-patient procedures and surgeries, to make room for demanding and less-lucrative COVID-19 patients. “To remain solvent, they had to lay off trained staff and very often, all or part of their talent acquisition teams” said Lisa Wilson, VP of Operations at OPA Staffing.

Specialty clinics are facing their own regimen of challenges. “Like the rest of us, healthcare providers occasionally get sick, and they need to be confident that their patients along with their teammates are being taken care of when they are unable to come to work., added Rachael Nuscher, BSN-RN who works at a dialysis clinic. “Having qualified candidates that are ready to step in when needed would alleviate the stress that healthcare workers feel when these things arise.”

As healthcare worker shortages were front and center on the national nightly news cycle, laid off healthcare employees formerly employed to support elective surgeries and preventative care procedures, received little or no coverage.

“There is a lot of noise in the healthcare community right now. Penetrating that noise during Covid-19 is the challenge for medical staffing companies. It is not business as usual,” said

Stephen E. Deason, CEO of OPA Staffing. “Now is the time that meaningful partnerships become more instrumental to navigate the challenges ahead. Drs. offices, clinics, and medical centers were forced to lay off much of their talented labor force due to the priority-shift caused by the Covid-19 pandemic,” added Deason. “As society is reopened, there will be an increased demand for healthcare staffing. In particular, skilled talent will be needed for elective surgeries; such as hernia, cataract, knee and hip replacements, cosmetic and more.”

As elective outpatient and non-urgent admissions within healthcare systems ramp up, staffing shortages are imminent, as well as stiff competition in meeting their specific facility requirements. “A large talent pool was turned loose during Covid-19,” added Denel Sims, Director of Recruiting at OPA Staffing. “We are actively recruiting those people.

“Healthcare facilities need to plan ahead and establish a pipeline to be ready when society reopens and the uptick happens,” added Director of Staffing Operations, Chris Wiley. “That’s one way to meet the challenge of locating and hiring talented, trained, skilled healthcare workers quickly.”

Using a medical staffing company provides a pipeline of qualified workers quickly and also mitigates liabilities should the uptick not be sustainable. “We are in unchartered-territory. There is potential for a down turn,” added CEO, Deason, “and if that is the case, utilizing a medical staffing agency such as OPA Staffing, provides significant flexibility in times of uncertainty and risk.”