Well-Being Prevention & Cures

National Guard to fill staff shortages in Wisconsin hospitals, nursing homes

(Associated Press photo/Scott Bauer, File)

Story at a glance

  • Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers announced Thursday National Guard troops will assist in filling staff shortages in the state’s hospitals and nursing homes.
  • The troops are being trained as certified nursing assistants.
  • “As we continue to see COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations surge, we are pursuing every available option to bring needed staffing support to Wisconsin’s health systems,” Evers said .

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers (D) announced Thursday National Guard troops will assist in filling staff shortages in the state’s hospitals and nursing homes amid a surge in hospitalizations related to COVID-19.  

Troops will deploy over a seven-week period beginning with the first 50 this week, while another 80 who are beginning training will deploy at the end of the month. An additional 80 members will begin training in early February. 

“As we continue to see COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations surge, we are pursuing every available option to bring needed staffing support to Wisconsin’s health systems,” Evers said in a news release 

Karen Timberlake from the department of health services said in the release support from the National Guard is “critical for supporting Wisconsin’s nursing homes.”  

“We continue to hear from our nursing home providers that they need more support to care for patients as our health system continues to be stressed by nearly two years of a global pandemic,” she continued. “Our new partnership with Madison College and the Wisconsin National Guard will help us ensure Wisconsinites have access to the care they need and help us increase critical healthcare capacity.” 

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Wisconsin reported 13,004 new COVID-19 cases in the past day, which brings the seven-day average to nearly 10,000. The new seven-day average is nearly twice as high as the number two weeks ago, the release said.  

The state is also reporting a record number of patients with COVID-19 in intensive care units with 488. Currently, there are 2,278 total COVID-19 patients in the state, according to the release.  

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