HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Of course during a global pandemic nurses have been in demand.
But when flu season arrives, healthcare workers will have their hands full, even more so.
“I love working with people, I have a passion for people and I just love giving care," LaToria Thomas said.
It takes a special kind of person to be a nurse. Huntsville Hospital is looking for more people like LaToria Thomas to join their team. Thomas just graduated from Calhoun Community College in May and began working at the hospital in June.
“I think coming out of nursing school, the biggest thing for me is just confidence. You feel like, am I prepared, are you ready to be on your own," Thomas said.
She says the environment at Huntsville Hospital was very easy to walk into.
“I have a great staff on my floor. They’re very professional and compassionate and they’re always willing to help," she explained.
Huntsville Hospital is rolling out new perks to recruit nurses. They include student loan repayment for new and existing nurses, child care and health and wellness benefits, and for nurses with one year of experience: signing bonuses.
The sign on bonus is $5,000 for RN and $2,500 for LPN.
Chief Nursing Officer Arin Zapf says they want to hire at least 200 new nurses by December. So far, 100 have taken them up on that offer.
“We’re not only filling our current positions, but we’re looking to hire again as many nurses as we can. Just to be prepared and ready to face this flu season and this winter season. We’re not sure what to expect but we’re anticipating a busy one," Zapf said.
And Thomas is ready for it.
“I love what I do and although starting in a pandemic wasn’t ideal, I’m happy that I am and it fulfills something inside of me.”