Over the past three months, I have had many conversations with the rural healthcare facilities I partner with in Washington state about how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted them. Lately, my searches for critical need positions have certainly looked different during this crisis; many of my clients have expressed that they don’t want to hire clients poached from other hospitals, given the circumstances. This mindset is very respectable, and thankfully, my team and I can source fantastic job seekers in the healthcare industry without stealing them from other hospitals that are also in need of staff members.
Some good stories amongst the negative
These past three months have been filled with wonderful phone conversations and lots of touching stories. Hearing these stories of communities coming together to support their local hospitals has made my heart happy. There have been parades, small businesses making masks and shields for their hospitals, financial support from the communities, and a sense of comradery. This is especially true for rural healthcare, which has taken quite the hit this year. There is so much light during these uncertain times, and this is what keeps us pushing forward.
Rural healthcare is taking a hit
Of course, there were the hard stories, the scary stories regarding rural health. Many of my clients had to furlough great employees, lay off staff members, take a low census, and freeze all elective surgeries. Nurses were begging to work; coders are without outpatient or inpatient work; it was a standstill. I often heard the Tom Petty song playing in my head, “The Waiting.” Everyone was merely scared and did not know what to expect with this pandemic. Therefore, many stayed away from the safest place of all, our hospitals.
We are slowly making a comeback
However, things are starting to turnaround for our rural healthcare facilities. All 50 states have eased their “stay at home” orders, and 26 states have officially reopened. These past two weeks have been so positive; patients are no longer scared to walk the hallways, and elective surgeries can proceed again. In my personal experience, the hospital is the safest place you can be. Perhaps we are no longer as fearful as we were three months ago when the pandemic was spreading like wildfire. Rural healthcare is finally making a comeback.
We can help your healthcare facility
As we start to move into this new normalcy, your rural healthcare facility may need help retooling their staff. My team and I at Johnson Search Group can help source the best talent on the market that fits into your budget and organization’s culture. The candidates we present to our clients are thoroughly vetted to fit both your team and your community. I deliver resumes that are backed with positive people with a want and need to serve, not just your hospital but also your communities. Let’s have a conversation about the needs of your organization and community. We are all in this together.