In a matter of days the staffing crisis at hospitals could get much worse. By the Thanksgiving holiday it could be dire.
New York’s COVID vaccine mandate for all healthcare workers takes full-effect on Monday, November 22. Religious exemptions will no longer be legal.
Leaders at healthcare facilities say this is going to make a bad situation much worse.
“I’d never experienced what we experienced yesterday in my entire career. I’ve been doing this for 30 years,” said Thompson Health CEO Michael Stapleton. At Thompson Hospital in Canandaigua some ICU patients are in emergency room beds.
Right now there are approximately 66 employees at Thompson Health who are working under religious exemption without the vaccine. Thompson says he needs every one of them on the job.
“They notified us at 2:15 on Monday that all of our folks on religious exemptions must be vaccinated or they can no longer work on this coming Monday. They gave us seven days,” he told 13WHAM-TV.
State leaders like Governor Kathy Hochul says there are National Guard members and thousands of student nurses ready to be deployed.
But, state leaders like Hochul have been saying that for months as those like Thompson Health continue to be dramatically understaffed.
“Hopeless is too strong of a word. But every time we think we’re going to start seeing a light…the light dims. And right now the light is dim,” Stapleton added.
In September, Thompson Health had hundreds of open positions. If dozens more employees leave when the mandate takes full-effect next week – then the situation will become dire there.
FingerLakes1.com is the region’s leading all-digital news publication. The company was founded in 1998 and has been keeping residents informed for more than two decades. Have a lead? Send it to [email protected].