It happens every year. The community anticipates the return of Yuma's winter visitors. Different license plates will fill up the roads as visitors come from Canada and colder U.S. states. With additional license plates on the road, you'll also see additional scrubs walking the halls of YRMC.
One group following the winter visitors return to the Desert Southwest are nurses. Every year, Yuma Regional Medical Center brings in nurses from colder states as well to help take care of the community.
YRMC says it is not much different from past winters, they usually bring in nurses to add to their staff.
The plan at this moment is for Yuma Regional Medical Center to bring in an additional 150 nurses to their staff to help accommodate the influx of winter visitors. They currently operate at about 300 nurses.
Randal Etzler, the Chief Human Resources Officer at YRMC, said that last winter numbers were down. Etzler adds that last year they didn't experience as much visitors as previous years, and that it was an anomaly. Historically, winter volumes go up.
They are expecting a full influx of winter residents this year.
"We expect them to be full force this year, so we're hoping to have those 150 nurses on board by the time our winter visitors get here," Etzler added.
If there's a bigger influx of winter visitors this year, Etzler said that YRMC has a "backup plan".
YRMC will reach out to various agencies to secure more nurses through a third-party. YRMC works on bringing in nurses every winter, so there'll be returning seasonal nurses ready to work.
"Nurses come back year after year. Many of them are Canadian, most of them are from colder states, they find Yuma very attractive in the wintertime, so it's pretty easy to get them to come back," Etzler said.
YRMC works hard to bring in extra helping hands because it'll better serve their patients.
"If we have a greater influx of patients into our hospitals and clinics, it's very important we have the staff who can serve them," Etzler said.
YRMC also said that with a greater influx of patients who need all kinds of care and who use the services a lot more, they are working hard to be better prepared in having the right kinds of services.