Late last week, Indiana became the latest state to deploy the National Guard to hospitals. The Indiana Department of Health confirmed to local media that Guard members were sent to 13 facilities after officials with Indiana University Health, the state’s largest hospital system, made the request.
Indiana University officials said it’s dealing with “all-time highs” of both COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 patients. Earlier this year, about 125 Indiana University health care workers were fired for not complying with the system’s vaccine mandate, although the hospital said at the time that most fired workers were part-time.
“As COVID cases continue to increase and hospitalization of COVID and non-COVID patients reach all-time highs, the demand and strain on IU Health’s team members, nurses and providers has never been greater,” Indiana University Health said over the weekend, adding that it “will leverage all available resources and enlist members of Indiana’s National Guard, in conjunction with the Indiana Department of Health, to assist in areas of critical need.”
Six-person National Guard teams with both clinical and nonclinical members will be sent to Indiana University hospitals in two-week intervals, officials said.