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HHSC putting out call for “all hands on deck” during staffing crunch

HHSC putting out call for “all hands on deck” during staffing crunch

Hamilton Health Sciences CEO Rob MacIsaac has put out an emergency call for staff who are on holiday or scheduled time off to pick up extra shifts to help deal with a severe staffing shortage, made worse by the explosion in Omicron cases.

In a release, MacIsaac noted that more than 400 staff are on isolation due to exposure to Omicron. This is happening at the same time as hospital caseloads have sharply increased. Friday alone, HHSC’s COVID case count increased by 30 to 170 and ICU cases increased by 2 to 19. All this while the hospital is dealing with outbreaks at all of its campus locations involving so far, 62 staff and patients.

MacIsaac announced measure to deal with the staffing crisis including:

A ramp down of certain procedures and scheduled surgeries. However the memo indicated HHS will continue “ to provide time-sensitive care and surgical activity in our cancer and pediatric programs.”

As an incentive the hospital is offering double time for those who pick up extra shifts over the next five days.

Other extraordinary measures being taken include:

  • Call-back of asymptomatic staff with a negative rapid antigen test (RAT) who are currently isolating at home.
  • Deployment of staff from our ambulatory areas to support inpatient care.
  • prioritization of PCR testing for staff and physicians to enable expedient return-to-work, with additional enhancements to the testing process underway.
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