KCRG.com, October 20, 2010

Big increases in patient numbers in recent months left University Hospitals scrambling to add nurses to the front lines of patient care.

New hires must go through orientation – from six to 12 weeks, depending on the unit and experience of the nurse so that has meant overtime and extra shifts for existing staff, as they wait for more nurses to come through the pipeline.

Hospitals in Cedar Rapids haven’t seen patient growth to the extent University Hospitals has, though St. Luke’s is seeing about 15 to 30 more patients a day in recent months and overall hiring is up slightly compared to last year, officials there said.

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