Actions

Severe nursing shortage in Nebraska

NE DHHS launched a new website to help recruit
Posted at 6:22 PM, Nov 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-11 19:22:53-05

OMAHA, NE — Experts say if current COVID-19 trends continue, hospitals will be full in about three weeks. Hospital staff, especially nurses, are struggling to keep up with the influx of patients as demand grows.

Clarkson College has a close affiliation with Nebraska Medicine and out of approximately 1,200 students, 75 percent are nursing students.

Clarkson College president James Hauschildt says not only is he seeing the demand for nurses grow during the pandemic, but that this has been a trend for years.

"It's a trend that I've seen over the past 10 years and then the pandemic has accelerated that need," Hauschildt said.

The state has allocated $40 million dollars of CARES Act funding to help with staffing in area hospitals. The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) also launched a new website to recruit as many nurses as possible during the current staffing shortage.

"It's an online resource that can connect nursing assistants and nurses to employment or volunteer opportunities within these Nebraska facilities that have critical staffing needs," Nebraska Chief Medical Officer Dr. Gary Anthone said.

The website is not only for practicing nurses, but nursing students as well.

"Nursing students during this time of their winter recess break can also take advantage of this opportunity," Dr. Anthone said.

Those that apply and are hired will receive training before starting.

Nebraska health care facilities that would like to list opportunities on the website can contact Ann Oertwich by calling 402.471.0317 or by emailing ann.oertwich@nebraska.gov.