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YNHHS opens System Nursing Central Staffing Office

On Jan. 31, Yale New Haven Health celebrated the opening of its first System Nursing Central Staffing Office, which provides nursing, patient care technician and business associate support to Bridgeport, Greenwich and Yale New Haven hospitals. 

The Central Staffing Office (CSO) now has an official “home” at 99 Hawley Lane in Stratford, but the program actually started in 2018. Then called the System Patient Service Operations Center (PSOC), it provided YNHHS-employed nurses to cover for hospital unit-based nurses who were on PTO or other types of leave. 

The PSOC – and now CSO – aims to reduce YNHHS’ reliance on traveling nurses, who are employed by outside agencies and hired to cover mostly long-term staffing gaps. Each year, YNHHS contracts with numerous traveling nurses, who tend to cost more and come with different job experiences. Nationwide, the demand for, and cost of, traveling nurses has soared recently as hospitals contend with pandemic-related staffing shortages.

“Since launching in 2018, Yale New Haven Health’s Central Staffing Office has oriented more than 100 nurses and continues to expand,” said MaryEllen H. Kosturko, RN, Bridgeport Hospital chief nursing officer and CSO executive sponsor. “It proved instrumental during the COVID-19 pandemic, providing a pool of much-needed nurses who could float to different units across the health system.”

In addition to nurses, the CSO’s staff includes YNHHS patient care technicians and business associates.