ODH leaders discuss health care worker burn out, shortage


DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — In a press conference Thursday morning, Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff, director of the Ohio Department of Health, highlighted the struggles many healthcare workers are facing during the pandemic.

“We have remarkable healthcare systems and healthcare providers, professionals, who’ve worked tirelessly to make sure those resources are available to us,” said Vanderhoff.

The stressors of the last year have also caused health care facilities, like hospitals, to lose workers.

“I think people are just exhausted, emotionally drained. Many have chosen to leave the work force and health care. That coincides with being busier in the hospital. I think those two forces are leading to challenges in looking after patients,” said Dr. Hector Wong of Cincinnati Children’s Hospital.

Premier Health leaders recently releasing a statement about hiring saying:

“Ensuring that we have the talent to provide care to our patients is a top organizational concern. It’s not enough to make new hires ‐ we must foster an outstanding employee experience and work life from top to bottom, in order to retain our talent.”

Kettering Health also released a statement on hiring workers:

“COVID-19 has impacted staff at hospitals across the state of Ohio and Kettering Health is no different. While the pandemic has posed challenges with staffing, we have been able to adapt plans and personnel to make sure we meet the needs of our community, and Kettering Health remains capable of treating all patients.”

Vanderhoff is urging people to do their part in this pandemic so healthcare workers aren’t overworked. “We’re in a very very serious wave of covid19. We need people to roll up their sleeves get vaccinated, and we need them to wear masks.”

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