Providence Sacred Heart asks staff to shift job duties to help with COVID mission

SPOKANE, Wash. – With more COVID-19 patients than any other time in the pandemic and other staffing challenges plaguing hospitals,  Providence Sacred Heart on Tuesday asked employees in other parts of the organization to sign up to help with the COVID mission.

Providence says this is the first time this “labor pool” model has been used in its Spokane hospitals.

“Providence Health Care has asked exempt (non-hourly) employees who are not actively supporting our COVID response to work some shifts in specific roles outside of their regular job description within the hospitals,” the organization said in a statement Tuesday.These include a mix of clinical and non-clinical roles depending on the employees’ clinical license. Non-clinical roles could include patient transport, Emergency Department waiting room attendant and more. This step is necessary to support the increasing number of COVID-19 patients and to assist with ongoing staffing challenges.”

A sign-up system will be implemented for salaried employees to volunteer.

Right now, there are more people hospitalized with COVID-19 in the Inland Northwest than at any other time in the pandemic. On Monday, COVID patient numbers in Sacred Heart’s ICU went from 16 to 22. Six children are also receiving critical care.

The organization is dealing with staffing challenges, as well.

Providence and MultiCare have hundreds of job openings in Spokane right now.

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READ: Six kids receiving critical care for COVID-19 at Providence in Spokane