Across North Texas, hospital workers are feeling the effects of nearly two years of COVID-19 care, and the omicron variant has only served to compound staffing issues.
Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas is holding a two-day hiring event from Tuesday through Wednesday online.
“The surge has impacted our staffing ratios. We already were challenged with staffing being in the healthcare industry. We’re short some of those key frontline workers,” said Stacy Dorsey, Parkland Health Vice President and Chief Workforce Officer. “The surge that we just had – not only were our numbers up in the hospital but we also folks out sick also. We have to get creative around how we are staffing also.”
Parkland is looking to hire for a number of positions.
“We have a significant amount of opening right now, so we are looking to hire a large group of folks – allied health, including radiology, respiratory therapy, physical therapy and occupational therapy. So, across the health care careers,” Dorsey said.
Months of COVID-19 care have started to take a toll on health care workers.
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“We are seeing folks retire early. We are seeing folks who may be frontline workers are taking the opportunity to be in roles where they can use their licenses and certifications, but maybe not on the front lines to give themselves some relief,” Dorsey said.
Traveling nurses have come in during the omicron surge to offer support, but Parkland is also looking toward future staffing.
“Long-term, we’re not just looking at today. We’re also looking at how do we potentially bring in more support staff… and create career paths for folks," Dorsey said. “That’s something we’re going to have to do more of over the next few years. We have increased minimum pay.”
Elsewhere, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission is hoping that hiring bonuses of up to $5,000 will attract more workers.