Pritzker: Hospitals are getting temporary help to address COVID-caused short-staffing

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CHICAGO, Ill. – Governor JB Pritzker has a message for what he says are continually-tired healthcare workers in the state still treating patients while in some cases themselves battling COVID-19.

Help is on the way.

“2,048 health care workers have been deployed across the state,” said Pritzker. “919 of them are on site supporting hospitals hit hard by COVID right now.”

Pritzker says another 500-plus will be in the state by next Friday. The help is being provided through the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Meanwhile, the state’s chief medical officer says COVID is only exacerbating a problem that started well before that: a shortage of workers at local hospitals.

“There are many strategies that need to be implemented,” said Dr. Ngozi Ezike, Director, Illinois Department of Public Health. “Thinking about how to recruit people to the fields, thinking about different class designations within the healthcare force that maybe don’t require as many years or a decade of training.”

Ezike says people are leaving the medical profession because of the exhaustion and anguish they’ve felt over COVID-19.

At this point, Ezike says as many as 80 percent of all new COVID-19 cases are among those who are unvaccinated, and the state only has about nine percent of its hospital beds available.

Feeds,News,Region: Peoria,Region: Central

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January 12, 2022 at 03:46PM

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