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Governor Hogan enacts executive order to address staffing shortages at health care facilities

Posted at 5:53 PM, Jan 24, 2022

BALTIMORE — Governor Larry Hogan has enacted an executive order expanding the state's efforts to support health care facilities in addressing staffing shortages.

The new order will effect, among other things, nursing Homes, hospitals and pharmacies.

Some of the emergency orders are:

1) Expanding the state's initiative to allow nursing students to serve as licensed practitioners by also including Licensed Practical Nurses, Certified Nursing Assistants, and Certified Medical Technicians.

2) Allows respiratory therapy students to assist in augmenting the emergency medical services (EMS) workforce.

3) Provides more licensing flexibility for pharmacists and technicians to help support the pharmacy workforce.

Moin Quazi has been a pharmacist for the last 17 years. Juggling shifts, workers quitting and no one to hire have been some of the problems, especially when cases rise like we've seen in the past few weeks.

"It's been so hard, those surges. With the sick people, the staff getting sick and the prescriptions of course. The number of phone calls, all these increase. It's just been very, very hard," Quazi said.

Mandy Leager is one of the managers here at Edward's Pharmacy. Pharmacies, like many businesses have, are expanding their services.

"We offered several services. We started with testing, then we went into supplies, then we've gone into kits, testing kits," said Leager.

Staffing shortages have been a problem during this whole pandemic. Even at Edward's Pharmacy, they might have enough people to cover a shift but, not enough people to cover nights or weekends. That means everybody works everyday.

"It's the same staff. We don't have shifts, we don't switch out. We're here every day all the time," Leager said.

A break is what many of us need after going through a pandemic for two years.