Pennsylvania, United States – Tens of thousands of medical employees in the United States suddenly lost their jobs, even when they are particularly critical in responding to the coronavirus crisis. Operating rooms and medical offices are closing as a result of urgent calls to prioritize COVID-19 patients in crowded hospitals and the economic blows the crisis is causing.
Just as hospitals are in dire need of professionals to care for the growing numbers of COVID-19 sufferers, others were sidelined when procedures, diagnoses, and appointments were canceled or postponed.
For example, many nurse anesthetists were fired in Pennsylvania, even when they are particularly critical in responding to the coronavirus crisis because they can tubing patients and connect them to respirators.RELATED
“I certainly never thought that there would come a day as a nurse when I would be applying for unemployment support, so it’s kind of surreal for all of us,” said Jess Poole, a nurse anesthesiologist who, until a couple of weeks ago, worked for a doctor’s office. anesthesiology in the Pittsburgh area.
Medical groups and specialists in large cities, small independent hospitals from Oregon to Connecticut, and large hospital systems present in several states, such as Steward Health Care, suffered sharp falls in income and dismissed or fired hundreds of employees.
Knowing how many medical professionals were out of work is imprecise, as the coronavirus began to affect the sector only in mid-March. Many institutions have said nothing in public. They cut hermetically. The monthly labor market report released Friday by the US government showed 42,000 declines in the health system. It’s just a small hint of what’s to come, because the government counted employees before the strong wave of layoffs arrived.
The cuts are mainly due to pressure from governments to cancel optional procedures, appointments, diagnoses and other services to keep hospital beds, while many patients postpone appointments to meet social distancing restrictions.
For some provider groups and hospitals, their slice of the cake is already sold out.
Although $ 100 billion of a federal relief package approved last month by President Donald Trump could help offset that, it’s unclear how or when the money will be distributed, or if it will be enough.
In recent days, hospitals monitoring the epidemic’s progress in the Pittsburgh area created disaster relief plans and contacted Poole to see if he could show up in the event of an emergency. The nurse answered yes.
“We don’t know if or when they will ask us to return to work,” Poole said. “We are a bit between a rock and a hard place.”