We’ve seen a 26 percent decline in hospitalized COVID-19 patients across the HASC region in the last 14 days, but the ongoing workforce shortage still limits relief for our weary caregivers.
The Inland Empire region was dealt particularly devastating blows this summer, outpacing all Southern California counties in hospitalizations at their respective peaks, and trailing neighboring counties in vaccination rates. For some areas, these challenges have resulted in a more grueling summer than the headline-grabbing winter surge.
Exacerbating our hospitals’ workforce challenges, the Sept. 30 statewide health care worker vaccination mandate deadline threatens to add to the chokepoint limiting staff for our hospitals and patient bedsides. For facilities in rural parts of Southern California, these concerns are acute.
The confluence of the vaccine mandate with the nationwide staff shortage, patients who have delayed care, and the approaching cold and flu season, are weighing heavily on our hospital executive, clinical, and public health leaders. These immediate concerns and uncertainties are also the current top priorities of our allied hospital associations in Sacramento and across the state.
HASC continues to work closely with local and state partners and CHA to seek relief and support at state and federal levels to help mitigate this workforce crisis — and the conditions that impede our progress. We continue, and will continue, to host regular meetings to hear frontline voices and provide actionable solutions in collaborative forums.
In the midst of the fatigue and uncertainty, remember that you and your steadfast professionals remain the heroes of this story.
Keep up the great work you’re doing — and stay informed, stay safe and stay tuned.