ST. JOHNSBURY, Vermont (AP) – Due to a staff shortage, the Caledonia County Sheriff’s Department can no longer provide 24-hour security at the Northeastern Vermont Regional Hospital.
Sheriff Dean Shatney said that as of Monday, hospital coverage will be “hit or miss”.
The department’s list has grown from 23 people before the coronavirus pandemic to 11 people, the Caledonian-Record reported.
“We’re stretched pretty thin right now,” Shatney said. “We have to think outside the box, being short-staffed like that, until we can have back-up personnel.”
The Sheriff’s Department has been providing 24/7 hospital security since 2012.
Hospital CEO Shawn Tester said it was unfortunate that the department could not maintain a constant presence and the hospital and he hoped more assistants could be hired to maintain a full-time presence at the hospital. the hospital.
“The hospital has become the conduit for those experiencing a mental health crisis,” Tester said. “There aren’t enough (psychiatric) beds in the state. It is our duty and responsibility to take care of these patients and they can sometimes be dangerous. “
He added that he was studying solutions such as hiring a private security company.