Hawaii Gets Pandemic Assistance from Out-of-State Medical Employees
As part of the $17 million CARES Act allocation, 170 outof-state medical employees were hired until Dec. 26, 2020 to help with pandemic efforts in Hawaii.
They were contracted by the Hawaiʻi State Department of Health (DOH) with Ohio-based ProLink Services to bolster staffing at Hawaiʻi’s hospitals and longterm care facilities because of the pandemic. The effort to staff post-acute care facilities is being coordinated by the DOH and the Healthcare Association of Hawaii (HAH).
The job roles were strategically selected to provide maximum value to the state. Individual staff may not remain at the same facility for the duration of their employment. Employees can be quickly mobilized into a “strike team” to assist specific nursing homes or hospitals, should a COVID-19 cluster emerge.
Gov. David Ige recently visited an onboarding session for about 50 out-of-state healthcare workers. The visit, conducted in a strictly controlled, socially distanced environment, was held at St. Francis Healthcare System in Liliha where the visiting nurses are learning the operations of Hawaiʻi’s long term care facilities.
“I thank the Dept. of Health and our many partners for making today a reality,” said Gov. David Ige, who visited both the traveling personnel and local healthcare employees who have been working on the frontlines since the early stages of the pandemic. “Our local healthcare employees have been working diligently, around the clock, making many personal sacrifices to ensure that the facilities they work in and our communities are safe and the spread COVID-19 is prevented. These traveling medical professionals will support and bolster Hawaiʻi’s healthcare workforce, should we experience a surge in cases.”
Dept. of Health Director Dr. Elizabeth Char said, “All arriving personnel have met rigorous health and safety standards in the fight against COVID-19. They are licensed, fully trained and ready to work in Hawaiʻi’s long-term care facilities.” ProLink’s supplemental personnel working in Hawaiʻi’s acute care hospitals have already undergone orientation and are on the job across the state.