PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) - As the pandemic rages on, the need for healthcare workers continues to climb across the country and here in Oregon.

Industry leaders say that the need for nurses is at an all-time high. Companies that hire healthcare employees say that they are struggling to get positions filled.

“We hire heroes. We really do. People on the frontlines,” said Blake Thiess, the director of talent acquisition for Prestige Care.

Prestige Care owns and operates a number of senior and assisted living facilities in the western United States. A majority of those are in the Portland metro area.

Thiess says just about anyone who is looking for a new career could find a job in the healthcare industry.

“We are hiring, not only entry level clinical people, like certified nursing assistants, LPN staff RNs, but anybody that would come in to provide care to a senior,” he said.

He says his company is struggling to get positions filled.

Across Oregon, many healthcare facilities and companies have created incentives to try and attract employees.

“Anything ranging from certified nursing assistants, I know a few of our buildings here in the Portland metro area are providing a $5,000 sign-on bonus for full-time team members, and that mirrors for staff LPNs and staff RNs,” he said.

Though there is a struggle to hire healthcare professionals, there is also a promising sign. The pandemic has led to a large influx of students interested in nursing.

“We have about 17% more applications to our on ground nursing programs than we had pre-pandemic. We changed all of our programs and opened new ones based on lessons we learned during the pandemic,” said Dr. Kim Dupree Jones, dean of the Linfield School of Nursing.

Need for healthcare workers continues to increase through pandemic

Image: KPTV

Linfield University says that there is an increase in incoming students who want nursing degrees, but also people who are already working careers, but decided to change to nursing because of the pandemic.

“A lot of people have used some time away from, I’ll just call it the treadmill of your normal career and your normal life, to think about is what I’m doing with most of my day, is that really feeding my soul?” said Jones.

That fulfillment is the reason Thiess says anyone who wants a fulfilling career should switch to healthcare.

“What we do at the end of the day matters. We are loving and caring for people in their time of need. What higher calling than that?” he said.

Copyright 2021 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved. 


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(12) comments


If you stopped firing them you might be better off, but then that interferes with being tyrannical.






Maybe quit putting unvaccinated workers on leave or terminating them, Peace Health? Laying off doctors in Florence. Right, Senior Capital of the coast, and fewer and fewer providers. You can walk into the hospital and hear the dead, so to speak. Ghost hospital.

Cat of the Canals

They are in the business of hiring health care professionals. Hiring a health care amateur causes more problems than firing one. They can't afford to have health care amateurs who don't believe in modern medicine. It costs lives and money.


Perhaps, they don't choose to put there faith in a product that was rushed to market in under a years time and then expeditiously rubber stamped by the powers that be in near record time without any thought as to the long term side effects of the above mentioned product. Can you say "Thalidomide", perhaps you're too young, but google it.


Perhaps, you might be too young to remember the thousands of GI's that were sent out to the deserts of the west back in the 1940's and 50's to test their survival during actual above ground nuclear tests. Of course, the government said then radiation was safe too!!!!


Well, just got bit by the old kptv reload the page while typing long post prevention software.

Anyway, you didn't understand what the provider was saying.

They are looking for anyone with a pulse to fill positions.

There isn't a program where senior bed pan changers are sent off to school for six months training.

But if Brown can suck in more federal funding, you can bet the high school graduates that don't have to pass mathematics or English will get a free ticket to diaper changing class.


What an ignorant comment!


Right, Ignorant...

Extremely sarcastic, yes.

65, I'm the one wearing diapers, so what are your credentials?


My thoughts exactly! Rather than vilifying health care workers who choose NOT to get the covid shot, they should be grateful for the staff they have - and, recognize that it is THEIR body and THEIR choice! There's plenty of hospital BEDS, it's a shortage of health care workers that keeps getting worse, because of stupid mandates!



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