The Texas Health and Human Services Commission is hoping that hiring bonuses of up to $5,000 will attract more workers.
Monday, HHSC announced bonuses for certain positions including registered nurses, licensed vocational nurses, and direct support professionals at state hospitals, which offer psychiatric care, and at state-supported living centers (SSLCs) for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
In a release shared Monday, HHSC listed the potential bonuses as follows:
- New RNs can qualify for $5,000 bonuses.
- Eligible LVN new hires could receive $3,500.
- DSPs and PNAs may qualify for $2,500 hiring bonuses
Scott Schalchlin serves as deputy director of HHSC’s Health and Specialty Care System. He told NBC 5 there are 3,000 open jobs right now across the state. He believes shortages are mostly related to retirements and people who left the workforce to care for their families. He says they're also seeing a major drop in applicants. For example, pre-pandemic they’d see an average of 15,000 applicants a month. More recently, that’s dropped to around 6,000 applicants monthly.
Schalchlin says they’re looking to hire nurses and other staff who want to make a difference in the lives of patients and residents.
“We're really taking people in the hospital system when sometimes they're at the very lowest and helping them to really heal and get to a good place. And with the people with intellectual disabilities, helping them to become more independent, and really get opportunities to do things that maybe they've never experienced, “said Schalchlin.
News from around the state of Texas.
The bonus applies to people who apply to work at specific locations in Abilene, Austin, Big Spring, Brenham, Corpus Christi, Denton, El Paso, Kerrville, Lubbock, Lufkin, Mexia, Richmond, Rusk, San Angelo, San Antonio, Terrell, Vernon, Waco and Wichita Falls. See the full list of qualifying cities and requirements here.
Locally, Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas is holding a two-day virtual hiring event from Tuesday through Wednesday.
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