Where can I find more information about Vizient?
Visit Vizient’s website for additional information.
What are the requirements to qualify for Vizient assistance?
The Vizient-Missouri state partnership is a strategy to increase bed capacity throughout Missouri. Hospitals were identified based on the ability to open closed units or add beds within seven days. This information was gathered from hospitals on Nov. 12 through EMResource, with engagement from emergency preparedness and human resource leaders from 116 hospitals.
How does this program work?
This program was designed to rapidly and efficiently increase surge capacity throughout Missouri. Modifying arenas, hotels and shuttered hospitals have resulted in high costs, extensive time for renovation, liability and management challenges, and limited patient types to be treated in these alternate care sites. Expanding capacity in functional hospitals is a flexible, faster and cost-efficient model that can be expanded in many, rather than one or two, communities.
What are the obligations for the state of Missouri and participating hospitals?
The state of Missouri and Vizient signed a master services agreement and, based on bed expansion capability, are working with hospitals to determine core staffing needed to support this expansion. The state will support the first phase of this project, approximately the first four weeks of staffing. The hospitals will be required to pay for the remainder of the 12-week staffing contracts.
What is the timeline?
The process currently is underway. The goal is to have staff begin in Missouri as soon as recruitment and administrative work is complete. The program is a 12-week staffing plan designed to alleviate strain through the winter surge.
How will this program help all hospitals?
The rural and metropolitan hospitals participating in this program understand their responsibility to decompress patient surge in their region and throughout the state. If fully staffed, this program will increase beds by more than 500 in Missouri, thus alleviating strain in many communities.
Will the list of hospitals receiving staff be released?
Gov. Parson released the names of all hospitals identified for initial planning. The final list of participating hospitals is not yet final.
Do you know if other states have contracted with this vendor?
Yes, many other states have used Vizient to address staff shortages and patient surge. Vizient supported surge efforts in Maryland, Arizona, Texas and Illinois.
What are the financial arrangements to pay for this assistance? Will the CARES Act funds be extended past Dec. 31, 2020?
The governor has committed to paying for the first phase of this program beyond Dec. 31.
Can Vizient begin recruiting our employees to go to work for them?
Vizient recruitment prohibits staff currently working in any Missouri health care facility, including long-term care, home health, etc., from accepting a contract. Language has been requested to ensure this criterion includes Kansas City and St. Louis metropolitan areas. In addition to other screening methods, agency staff will be required to sign a cover attestation and submit past and current places of employment.
What happens to my current travel nurses if the Vizient rates are higher?
The current rates for agency staff, especially critical care nurses, are very high and rising based on national demand. Vizient has taken several steps, including not over-recruiting and setting Midwest versus coastal rates, to remain within the range currently being asked.
How long will credentialing take, and how long will it take to get the nurses onboarded?
The process is moving quickly, although credentialing and background checks still must be required.
Will Vizient supply staff for long-term care facilities?
Currently, there is no plan for Vizient to supply staff for LTCFs. LTCFs will continue working with DMAT for targeted staffing needs when a facility is at risk for closure due to lack of staffing.