Political officials and health care leaders have been on the news imploring health care practitioners from other states to make a temporary move to help their hospitals and other facilities address the surge of patients needing care for COVID-19 infections. Sadly, there just aren’t enough nurses to fill all of the job openings. However, there are some steps you can take to attract the nurses you need during this crisis:
- Incentivize nurses to serve in affected areas. Higher wages and extended student loan repayment programs can help. Consider paying all or some of travel and housing costs for relocating nurses.
- Reactivate licenses and let nurses practice across state lines. Work with nurse licensing boards to facilitate deployment of RNs to where they are needed via expeditated processing of license applications.
- Relax scope-of-practice and oversight laws. Encourage state policymakers and regulatory agencies to ease scope-of-practice restrictions.
- Leverage the skills of nursing students, who can be deployed to use the clinical skills they’ve achieved to date.
- Provide new child-care options.
- Take care of healthcare workers’ personal and emotional needs.
- Improve access to personal protective equipment.