Henry Ford Health looking overseas for nurses to address staffing shortage

Henry Ford Health System reports ‘significant’ increase in COVID hospitalizations

DETROIT – A major Michigan heath care provider said it is looking overseas for hundreds of nurses.

Henry Ford Health System is working on a plan to bring nurses to southeastern Michigan, especially from The Philippines, said chief executive Wright Lassiter III.

“We are working on a large swath of folks coming in the first quarter of next year to be able to provide service by summer, hopefully, once we get through the training and immigration process,” Lassiter said Wednesday at the Mackinac Policy Conference on Mackinac Island.

Henry Ford Health has an “extreme challenge” in filling jobs throughout the system, from patient care to housekeeping, he said.

Henry Ford Health last week said it had dropped 120 beds from five hospitals due to staff shortages. Beaumont Health said it was idling 5% of its beds.

“In some cases, we have folks who love what they do in health care saying, ‘I just cannot go through this again,’” Lassiter said, referring to the stress of COVID-19.