How are patient ratios changing with the increase in COVID-19 cases?
Nursing ratios may be higher than usual because of mandated ratios related to statewide executive orders to lift mandated staffing ratios due to pandemic needs. We are starting to see states regulatory bodies give hospitals the ability to go out of ratio with approval.
For example, the California Department of Public Health has given hospitals a way to apply for this quickly, and has outlined the following:
- ICU — from 1:2 to 1:3
- Step-down units — from 1:3 to 1:4
- ED and telemetry — from 1:4 to 1:6
- Med/surg — from 1:5 to 1:7
While hospitals do have to apply for this, we are seeing it more and more, so travel nurses will potentially work out of ratio but often in team nursing with float RNs or support staff from other departments. You may also be working with a team of healthcare professionals that may include LPNs, MA, CNAs and/or New Grad Nurses. In some health care facilities, Student Nurses (Nurse Externs who have not completed their program) are also supporting patient care services under the supervision of a licensed RN. Travel Nurses may be working in a primary RN or team-based model of care. Please work with your facility Supervisor to delegate to LPNs or unlicensed team members within scope of practice.
For more information, please refer to NCSBN delegation guidelines.
What if my COVID-19 test comes back negative but my facility won’t let me return to work?
While this is an unfortunate situation, it can and does happen due to circumstances out of our control. This is determined by individual facility policies and practices. AMN Healthcare will partner with the facility to determine the first, safest time for you to return to the assignment, assess your current assignment and provide you with potential options and support.
How will AMN handle a Healthcare Professional refusing to go to their confirmed assignment?
The recruitment team will call the healthcare professional and then provide follow-up information to the Account Manager.
The Account Manager will communicate directly to the healthcare facility.
What steps should I take if a Healthcare Professional is refusing to perform patient care?
The healthcare facility/healthcare professional/or internal business partner will notify AMN Healthcare by calling the COVID-19 AMN Healthcare Call Tree during business hours or by calling the afterhours On-Call Clinical Manager at 800-282-0300.
AMN Healthcare will internally screen and performance manage the healthcare professional and communicate back to the facility.
What is AMN’s process once a client notifies of an exposure?
The AMN Healthcare COVID-19 Call Tree will complete a tracking log and an audit in the AMN personnel record on all confirmed and potentially exposed healthcare professionals.
The AMN Healthcare COVID-19 Call Tree will instruct the healthcare professional to track their temperature and symptoms and if they begin to show symptoms, the healthcare professional will notify the AMN Healthcare COVID-19 Call Team immediately. The AMN Healthcare COVID-19 Call Team will advise on where and how to seek care. If the healthcare professional is having a medical emergency, such as respiratory distress, they will be instructed to call 911.
How do I notify AMN of a potential exposure?
The healthcare facility will notify AMN Healthcare by calling the COVID-19 AMN Healthcare Call Tree during business hours or by calling the afterhours On-Call Clinical Manager at 800-282-0300.
Potential Exposure – The healthcare facility will notify the healthcare professional to quarantine in their current living arrangement until exposure is confirmed. They will instruct the healthcare professional to track temperature and symptoms twice a day on a tracking log which will be returned to the facility.
Confirmed Exposure – If COVID-19 is already confirmed, the healthcare facility will notify the healthcare professional to quarantine and follow CDC return to work guidelines.
ii. The healthcare facility will notify the healthcare professional and AMN Healthcare of the date the healthcare professional is eligible to return to work if they remains asymptomatic.
How are you proactively identifying talent in critical areas of need?
Our talent team and client-facing team members are working together to evaluate needs in the market related to the crisis. We already have a very strong roster of candidates ready to deploy in most areas. In critical areas of need (i.e., infection control), we are making investments in digital sourcing strategies and dedicating resources to build a pipeline to meet your expectations when you need us most.
How quickly could you get us Interim Leaders if we called in an emergency situation?
In many situations, we can get you an Interim on site in as little as one week. Each situation is unique, but the faster we can capture information and launch into the search, the quicker we can find you a solution.
Should I use a screening form provided by AMN? What if my employee or healthcare professional has traveled internationally recently?
When your healthcare professional discloses recent travel or planned travel to any of the affected locations designated by the CDC and WHO, we request immediate disclosure to AMN. Our clinical team supports you through the screening process and determination of next steps with the facility.
What is AMN doing to oversee COVID-19 with your healthcare professionals?
We have implemented screening and protection protocols with information provided by the CDC, American Hospital Association, and American Nurses Association for healthcare professionals being placed on new assignments.
We have reminded all healthcare professionals currently on assignment to follow their facility’s infection protection and screening protocols, and provided them with additional CDC and World Health Organization resources.
We have a hotline for our clients to call us at 800-887-1456, as well as an internal escalation path for issues.
We have a process for potential or confirmed exposure, including tracking logs and audits.
Our leadership from every department at AMN meet daily to ensure we are on track and in sync with what’s needed from our clients and healthcare professionals