National Guard members deployed to Kentucky hospitals

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Posted at 6:36 PM, Sep 13, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-13 20:40:05-04

Members of the Kentucky National Guard will provide extra help at St. Elizabeth campuses across Northern Kentucky starting Tuesday, working to alleviate an increasingly heavy strain on hospitals across the commonwealth.

Sixty-nine percent of Kentucky hospitals have critical staffing shortages, according to the state.

The 15 guard members dispatched to St. Elizabeth hospitals in Florence, Edgewood and Fort Thomas are part of a battalion of 400, all sent out with the same two-week mission. It's the largest health care crisis deployment in Kentucky's history.

They’ll be taking over COVID-19 testing from overwhelmed clinical staff, freeing up health care workers for other tasks.

“Every hospital they go to talks about how it’s not only a morale boost, but it truly helps in the operation and allows them to perform more care to patients,” said Gov. Andy Beshear.