Recruitment, Readiness, and Retention of Providers at a Field Hospital During the Pandemic

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In response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, the State of Maryland established a 250-bed emergency response field hospital at the Baltimore Convention Center to support the existing health care infrastructure. To operationalize this hospital with 65 full-time equivalent clinicians in less than 4 weeks, more than 300 applications were reviewed, 186 candidates were interviewed, and 159 clinicians were credentialed and onboarded. The key steps to achieve this undertaking involved employing multidisciplinary teams with experienced personnel, mass outreach, streamlined candidate tracking, pre-interview screening, utilizing all available expertise, expedited credentialing, and focused onboarding. To ensure staff preparedness, the leadership developed innovative team models, applied principles of effective team building, and provided just in time training on COVID-19 and non-COVID-19-related topics to the staff. The leadership focused on staff safety and well-being, offered appropriate financial remuneration, and provided leadership opportunities that allowed retention of staff.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere102
JournalDisaster medicine and public health preparedness
Issue number8
StatePublished - Jan 10 2023


  • COVID-19
  • field hospitals
  • pandemics
  • recruitment
  • staffing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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