Justice Government to Use CARES Funding to Help Reduce Nursing Shortage
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) – West Virginia Governor Jim Justice announced on Tuesday that he would use $ 48 million in CARES Act funding to help alleviate staffing shortages at state hospitals.
“We know we have an incredible shortage of nurses in West Virginia.”
According to Gov. Justice, three of the state’s institutions will be part of a new “aggressive” program to recruit and train more qualified nurses in the state of West Virginia.
The $ 48 million in federal CARES Act money will be turned over to the Higher Education Policy Commission for distribution among Concord University, Glenville State College, and Bridge Valley Community and Technical College.
The governor of justice said in a virtual press conference Tuesday that 1,700 nurses had chosen not to renew their licenses in 2021. The governor said that 68% of those 1,700 indicated they were “tired. As the reason for their non-renewal.
Gov. Justice went on to read the following statement from the West Virginia Hospital Association:
âProjections show that for the 2021 holiday season, we will approach the highest number of COVID-19-related hospitalizations in West Virginia since the start of the pandemic. The vast majority of patients in intensive care units or those on ventilators are not vaccinated and the nationwide shortage of our antibodies has severely restricted access to effective treatment options. We see a large number of patients suffering from other health conditions requiring hospital care: such as – flu, heart disease, cancer and trauma. This combination has put a strain on the health care system and now, after almost two years, the system is approaching breaking point.
With this investment, officials say they will be able to implement and expand key nursing education programs, including fully funding the West Virginia Nursing Fellowship Program and by developing a loan repayment program for nursing teachers.
The expansions of the LPN and RN programs were highlighted at the virtual press conference on Tuesday.
Glenville State College announced a joint program with Marshall University.
Concord College announced on Tuesday the start of a brand new program.
âFor 150 years, Concord University has strived to meet the needs of West Virginia by training its teachers, business leaders, social workers and professionals. As we continue to navigate life amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the demand for healthcare workers is greater than ever, and Concord University is grateful to be able to serve the region and state again. by establishing a nursing program, âsaid President Kendra Boggess. .
Concord administrators, faculty and staff say they have started work on a nursing degree program, a new addition to Concord that President Boggess hopes will lead to further allied health degrees at the to come up.
Bridge Valley community and technical college officials said they would expand existing nursing programs.
This is a developing story.
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