Lawmakers outline plan to add more nursing programs across Pennsylvania – WPXI

PITTSBURGH – “They’re overworked, overworked and it’s just a major strain on the system,” state Rep. Aaron Bernstine told Channel 11.

For nearly two years, nurses have been on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Across the country, there has been a shortage of nurses for months, and the Pittsburgh area is no exception.

Rep. Bernstine just introduced legislation that would add more nursing programs statewide.

“As the law currently stands, only regionally approved schools can provide the required nursing education. What we want to do is change that for nationally accredited schools and other places. That way people can move here to Pennsylvania, get their licenses, and be accredited in order to serve patients in PA,” Rep. Bernstine said.

The CCAC is also working to help end the shortage. Kane College and Community Living Centers are collaborating on a new Certified Health Care Aide Training Program that is free to Allegheny County residents who wish to become health care aides.

Channel 11 reported that the AHN is now offering signing bonuses to attract nurses, and UPMC has created an in-house travel nursing program in hopes of attracting applicants.

“These are our heroes on the front line. We need to do everything we can to make their lives easier,” Rep. Bernstine said.

He hopes his bill can make a difference.

“These are the outdated laws that we have on the books. While this legislation is not a silver bullet to fix everything, it does make it easier for nurses to be licensed in Pennsylvania,” he added.