WICHITA FALLS, Texas (TNN) - United Regional is likely to receive additional staff through the State due to an increase in COVID-19 patients.
The request is still being processed, but the hospital is expecting between 50 and 60 temporary staff members.
The staff will include critical care registered nurses (RNs), non-critical care RNs and respiratory therapists.
As of Tuesday morning, there are 84 patients positive for COVID-19 or suspected positive. Of those 84 patients, 20 are in critical care.
With the additional staff, United Regional can also expand its critical care capacity by converting a different unit temporarily.
Currently, a tent sent by the State has been set up outside of the Emergency Department as an extension of the hospital.
It will be used to provide outpatient infusion therapy for patients receiving Bamlanivimab for now, but it can also be repurposed as the local situation changes.
See below for the full press release:
United Regional to receive additional staffing resources from the State
Wichita Falls, TX – November 24, 2020 – The increase in COVID patients over the past few weeks at United Regional has been substantial. As of this morning, November 24, there are 84 COVID-positive or COVID-suspected patients at United Regional; 20 are in critical care.
Operating at or near full critical care capacity with both COVID and non-COVID patients, United Regional Health Care System submitted a request on November 19 for additional staffing and resources from the Texas Department of State Health Services.
“We are on the cusp of a community and regional crisis,” said Phyllis Cowling, President and CEO of United Regional. “We have reached a point where we’ve had to decline critical care patients from rural hospitals simply due to the lack of available staff.”
United Regional has requested additional staff members to include critical care registered nurses (RNs), non-critical care RNs, and respiratory therapists. Although the request is still in process, we’ve been notified that we will likely receive between 50-60 temporary staff, which will be contracted through the State.
“As the local COVID cases continue to rise, we too have seen an increase in the number of COVID positive or quarantined employees,” said Jacky Betts, Director of Trauma, Acute Care Surgery & Emergency Management at United Regional. “The addition of contracted health care workers from the State will help alleviate some of the strain we are experiencing with staffing capacity.”
With the State’s staffing resources, United Regional can expand our critical care capacity by converting one of our progressive care units into a temporary critical care unit.
A tent, also allocated from the State, was assembled on Monday outside of the Emergency Department and will serve as an extension of the hospital. It will initially be used to provide the outpatient infusion therapy for patients receiving Bamlanivimab but could also be repurposed for other patient care needs as the local situation evolves.