Cypress Edition | June 2023

PEOPLE Veronica Martin Senior vice president and chief nursing executive at St. Luke’s Health


HOW HAS RECRUITMENT BEEN IN THE NURSING FIELD? We have very intentional plans around recruitment of our nurses back into the workforce. We have a national nurse residency program that provides evidence-based support for new nurses. We provide ongoing education and support for our existing sta for their own professional development. Over the course of the last nine months or so, we have started to see recruitment pick up. Now you see people wanting to return back to departments that they left for a variety of dierent reasons, so we have seen some of that pick up. We have to think about creative scheduling and shifts that meet not only the needs of the organization but the team member as well. The exible shift is a recruitment tool to tap into the possible missed opportunity in the workforce. It’s also an opportunity to support the well-be- ing of our team members. No matter what we do, we balance that with the needs of the patient. We still have to make sure we have the right numbers to take care of our patients every day. WHAT WORDS OF ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE THOSE INTER ESTED IN NURSING? There are so many pathways and career choices, whether you want to work in a clinical space, or be an educator, in leadership or research. All of those roles still inuence the patient in some shape or form. If you have a desire and passion to help people, then there’s no greater joy that you will be seeing than being a nurse. I would say to the next generation, don’t give up on health care. We need your thoughts, your ideas, your energy, your passion and your enthusiasm.


Unprecedented demands placed on the nation’s nurses during the pan- demic have increased the need for nurses in the United States, according to ndings from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. In an October report, the agency found an additional 275,000 nurses will be needed from 2020-30. The Department of Labor announced an $80 million Nursing Expansion Grant Program last October to help address the chal- lenges. Veronica Martin serves as the senior vice president and chief nursing executive at St. Luke’s Health. In her role, Martin considers dierent technologies and strategies that help support nurses and the health care system. Martin spoke with Community Impact to discuss the challenges and oppor- tunities coming out of the pandemic for the nursing eld. Responses were edited for length, style and clarity.

The U.S. is projected to experience a shortage of registered nurses through 2030. NUMBERS IN NURSING

Workforce growth expected in next decade Average age for an RN RNs will retire from the workforce by 2030 Openings for RNs each year through 2031

+200K +6% 52 +1M

WHAT WAS MOST CHALLENG ING FOR NURSES AND THE HEALTH CARE FIELD COMING OUT OF THE PANDEMIC? I don’t think any of us would have imagined that three years later, we would have ran the course in that time period. For health care, it was establishing what the norm was. How do we get back to basics? Our nurses were tired, worn and in need of this refresh of their commitment and purpose to the profession. As health care systems, we had to think about how we deliver care. Just because the pandemic moved to the epidemic, it didn’t mean that we didn’t have COVID[-19] patients in the hospital. We still have very few COVID[-19] patients in the hospital even as [of] today. So how do we exist in what our normal looks like when we’re faced with stang challenges? Which of course, it’s no secret that many

nurses left the workforce during that period of time. We are having to gure out what new deliveries of care models look like. It goes back to dening what our normal is. HOW DID SUCH CHALLENGES AFFECT THE NURSES WHO WERE ON THE FRONTLINES? Often in the very early onset of COVID[-19], when we ... absolutely did not have visitors come into the hospitals, the mortality was extremely high at that time. Often that nurse ... would be one of the single entities at the bedside when patients’ lives came to an end. That totality of that along with the uncertainty and learning how to take care of this patient population, while concerned about your own family, really took a toll on our nurses and health care providers across the country.

$61,780 Educational services* $72,420 Nursing and residential care facilities $76,700 Ambulatory health care services $78,070 Hospitals* $85,970 Government The following were the median annual wages in May 2021 for registered nurses in the industries in which they worked. AVERAGE PAY



LUNCH & LEARN & LEARN VA Benefits You’re invited to Park Creek for an informative luncheon for military veterans and their spouses. A representative from Veteran Care Advisors of Texas will present an overview of the Veteran Aid & Attendance Program.

MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR VA BENEFITS Thursday, July 20 ~ 11:00 a.m.

Space is limited so RSVP by calling 281-205-4939.

16718 Huffmeister Road | Cypress, TX 77429



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