Arizona bringing 600 nurses from out of state to help hospitals with surge

Jul 15, 2020, 10:54 AM | Updated: 11:17 am
(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)...
(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

PHOENIX – Help is on the way for hospitals in Arizona that are straining under the burden of increasing coronavirus patients.

The Arizona Department of Health Services announced a partnership with Vizient, Inc., on Wednesday to bring in nearly 600 out-of-state nurses to work at hospitals as they expand capacity under surge plans.

Vizient is a Texas-based company that helps health care organizations across the U.S. improve their performance.

The state said it will provide hospitals in compliance with all of Gov. Doug Ducey’s executive orders with extra staffing at no charge for up to six weeks.

“Our frontline healthcare workers and hospital staff have worked tirelessly to care for Arizonans and we are so appreciative of their efforts,” Health Director Dr. Cara Christ said in a press release.

“We’ve prioritized providing these staffing resources to fill critical resource gaps in hospitals and ensure they can continue to provide excellent care across the state.”

The incoming critical care and medical-surgical nurses will be deployed via the Arizona Surge Line, which was established during the pandemic to help divert patients from hospitals without room to locations with space.

Federal partners have sent Arizona nearly 100 National Disaster Medical System personnel for two-week deployments over the last month, the release said.

On June 25, Banner Health, the state’s largest hospital network, said it contracted for more than 200 additional nurses to help deal with the rise in COVID-19 patients.

The number of confirmed or suspected COVID-19 patients in Arizona’s hospitals reached a record level on Monday but dipped by 24 overnight to 3,493 on Tuesday, according to the state health department.

The number of COVID-19 patients in ICU beds also declined overnight from a record high, falling from 970 on Monday to 929 on Tuesday.

According to hospital data for Tuesday, 51.2% of all Arizona inpatients and 61% of the state’s ICU patients are confirmed or suspected COVID-19 cases.

Overall, the latest data showed Arizona’s inpatient beds as 87% full and ICU beds as 90% full, both just below the highest levels seen during the pandemic.

The state reported a record 97 new coronavirus deaths and 3,257 more cases Wednesday, bringing the totals to 131,354 cases and 2,434 fatalities.

The state reported 117 deaths on July 7, but that total included 52 confirmed through death certificate matching. There was no indication that Wednesday’s report had any death certificate matching.

The previous high death report for a day that didn’t include death certificate matching was 88 on July 1.

Lifetime Windows & Doors

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(AP Photo/Piper Hudspeth Blackburn, File)...
Danny Shapiro

Women’s health providers in Arizona halting abortions following Supreme Court ruling

Some women's health providers in Arizona are halting abortions following Friday's Supreme Court ruling that stripped away constitutional protections for women and left decisions on their legality to the states.
16 hours ago
Rusty French, left, is accused of killing Pamela Rae Martinez on June 11, 2022, in Glendale, Arizon...

Man arrested after police find his photo on slain Glendale woman’s cellphone

Police have made an arrest in the fatal shooting of a Glendale woman who photographed the suspect before her death.
16 hours ago
People protest about abortion, Friday, June 24, 2022, outside the Supreme Court in Washington. (AP ...

Arizona’s political leaders react to Supreme Court abortion ruling

Many of Arizona's political leaders at the state and federal levels shared their reactions to the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade on Friday.
16 hours ago
(AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)...
Monica Lindstrom

Legally Speaking: Abortion no longer a constitutional right, states to make decision

Roe and Casey are overturned. There is no longer a constitutional right to abortion. However, the question of whether an abortion is legal has reverted back to the states for each of them to decide on their own.
16 hours ago
Anti-abortion activists react to the 6-3 ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization whi...
Kevin Stone

What does Roe v. Wade reversal mean for Arizona abortion law?

Now that the Supreme Court has put abortion law authority in the hands of the states, what does it mean for Arizona?
16 hours ago
(Arizona Capitol Museum Photo)...
Associated Press

Arizona legislators push final bills as adjournment looms

The Arizona Legislature was moving Thursday night to vote on a flurry of bills lawmakers need to clear off their desks so they can adjourn for the year.
16 hours ago

Sponsored Articles


Most plumbing problems can be fixed with regular maintenance

Instead of waiting for a problem to happen, experts suggest getting a head start on your plumbing maintenance.
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

Vaccines are safe if you are pregnant or breastfeeding

Are you pregnant? Do you have a friend or loved one who’s expecting?

Best retirement savings rates hit 4.30%

Maximize your retirement savings with guaranteed fixed rates up to 4.30%. Did you know there is a financial product that can give you great interest rates as you build your retirement savings and provide you with a paycheck for life once you retire? It might sound too good to be true but it is not; this product is called an annuity.
Arizona bringing 600 nurses from out of state to help hospitals with surge