Sanford Health welcomes nurses as capacity nears

"We're anticipating that we'll need staff for high census all the way through the winters and so we're planning for that."

FARGO, N.D. (KVRR) – Sanford Health is seeing facilities near capacity and with a shorthanded staff, the workload is beginning to take a toll.

Local medical facilities continue to surge towards maximum capacity. 530 patients are being housed and treated. 38 of those are COVID related, 10 of those patients are in ICU and staff members are working overtime to provide the care our community needs.

“The staff is working very very hard, very proud of them. We’re doing all sorts of things to support them,” Sanford Health Fargo Vice President and Medical Officer Dr. Doug Griffin said.

But even with support the heavy workload begins to take a toll on a short handed staff.

“Staff are getting tired I think there is some sense of frustration,” said Griffin.

Amid all of this Sanford Vice President Doctor Doug Griffin is confident in the reinforcements. Those that are on the job with more on the way by week’s end.

“I think we’ve brought on close to 170 travel nurses. I think we’re expecting another 25 or 26 or so, maybe upwards of thirty when you add it all in by the end of this week,” Griffin said.

The new recruits are arriving just in time to take on the approaching flu season as well. But more staff is still needed.

“We’re anticipating that we’ll need staff for high census all the way through the winters and so we’re planning for that,” said Griffin.

Along with recruitment, retention efforts are also in full swing, Dr. Griffin is working on keeping his staff intact while he continues to add to the team, with the flu season approaching.

“Continue to work on retaining our staff as well as, we have a variety of programs for both retention and recruitment going on so that is something we have a very close look on,” said Griffin.

Dr. Griffin says Individuals who are eligible can receive the COVID booster shot and influenza shots at the same time.

Categories: Coronavirus-ND, Health, North Dakota News