Nursing homes struggled with staffing even before the pandemic -- but jumped to a 23 percent shortage in the USA by the end of 2020.
That shortage means resident care can suffer, workers face more stress and COVID cases can spread faster,
U.S. Public Interest Research Group warned in a January 2021 report.
It took a toll on some nursing homes.
“Other nursing homes, I will call it the mom and pop nursing homes, did not make it. They were struggling to the point that they had to close,” said Marissa Varney, assistant administrator at St. Marys d'Youville Pavilion in Greene, Maine. “Other facilities really could not help them because they are on the same boat of staffing challenges.”
St. Marys d'Youville Pavilion was able to continue serving its patients — thanks, in part, to international nurses.
They stepped in, including to fill shifts that would otherwise be difficult to hire, like nights, weekends and holidays.
“The nursing staff that we have selected are very passionate about the patients. They're very dependable. They never complain,” Varney said. “We just tell them this is your assignment. This is where we need you. Okay.”
Through our international recruitment brand, PassportUSA, we have the largest network of highly-qualified and credentialed global healthcare professionals available for interview and selection available anywhere.
They have on average eight years of experience and education and training that exceeds common standards or practice in the United States.
“This nursing staff that we have received from Passport, you know, I can't thank them enough for working in this building,” Varney said.
Varney spoke in an exclusive interview about why she was drawn to working in a nursing home and what changes they made during COVID-19 to help both patients and providers.