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Nurses and Understaffing: COVID Edition

Healthcare License DefenseWe have already written about the prevalence of understaffing in nursing. Undoubtedly, the Covid-19 Pandemic has severely exacerbated the existing understaffing issues. Now more than ever before, nurses are facing extremely challenging work environments with unforgiving and unrelenting conditions.

Already understaffed, facilities reaching critical capacities due to the Covid-19 Pandemic only further highlights these existing difficulties. Nurses who already struggle to provide care to a typical number of patients simply cannot manage an even larger number of patients. As much as patients are filling facilities with Covid-19, nurses are being exposed to the virus and many have fallen ill. With strict and long quarantine policies, a facility can be without multiple nurses at once. This can be devastating for facilities, especially those with minimal staff.

In many cases, nurses who test positive for Covid-19 are out of work for at least 14 days, and only return when they obtain a negative test result. For some people, despite having a negative test result and surpassing the quarantine period, their physical health remains affected by the virus. Scientists and doctors have barely scratched the surface of understanding the condition known as “Long Covid,” but the reality is that many nurses who tested positive continue to have symptoms long after their initial illness. These symptoms, which include fatigue, brain fog, heart palpitations, and lesions, can gravely affect the nurses’ ability to perform their work, if they are even able to physically be at work. This creates a perpetual cycle of understaffing and makes already-difficult work even more challenging.

The burnout associated with working in treacherous conditions due to the pandemic has been widely documented and acknowledged but remains understated. Only the various professionals in the Nursing industry know what it is like to experience these conditions. Hurdles that Nursing Applicants already faced pre-pandemic have been made more contentious by bureaucratic red tape stemming from government facilities being closed or having less access to their normal resources. As a result, too few nurses are being licensed to join the ranks of the overworked nurses on the very frontlines of the pandemic. Limited resources are currently available to overcome these conditions, and the pre-pandemic issue of understaffing would have to be rectified before tackling the particular challenges brought forth by covid-19. Williams & Nickl has represented many Nurse Applicants who face issues with IDFPR. If you find yourself in such a situation, Williams & Nickl can provide the help you need.

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