Volunteers needed at Ravalli County long-term and assisted-living care facilities

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In his 42 years in nursing, Discovery Care Centre’s administrator, Rick Bucheit, has never seen a shortage in staffing the Hamilton long-term health care facility faces today.

The facility normally employs about 90 people in both full- and part-time positions.

On Wednesday, they were at 50.

“This is the most critical shortage of staffing that I’ve seen in my career,” Bucheit said. “I’ve been working as a clinical nurse and an aide this past week. It’s all hands on deck.”

The facility isn’t alone in facing staffing challenges in Ravalli County.

This week, Ravalli County Public Health encouraged the public to step forward and volunteer at local long-term and assisted-living facilities in Ravalli County.

“Over the last few weeks, we have received information from more than a few of our local long-term and assisted-living care facilities regarding a need for caregivers as well as other support services,” stated a public health update. “We are encouraging anyone interested in volunteering time, especially anyone with a health care background that wants to get involved, to call your local long-term care or assisted-living facilities to find out how you can help.”

Public Health Director Tiffany Webber hoped the message would be a call to action.

“We wanted to

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