ICU nurses from around the nation to care for COVID-19 patients in Arizona as cases rise

As Arizona sees a spike in COVID-19 patients, hospitals are needing more ICU nurses to care for them. Hospitals are now reaching beyond state lines to hire nurses from other states for help.

A valley ICU nurse who travelled to New York City mid-April to help when it was a COVID-19 hotspot didn’t expect to see this caseload in Arizona.

This nurse is remaining anonymous.

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"It's just crazy being in New York and coming home. I didn't think this was going to happen, especially in June and July ... we've been told the virus doesn't live in heat," she said.

She returned from her New York  assignment in mid-May and now Arizona hospitals seeing a spike in COVID-19 cases.

"We’re expanding quite rapidly and were looking for more nurses that way we can keep our patient ratio safe since they do require a specific type of care," she explained.

RELATED: Arizona sees nearly 2,400 new virus cases, a daily high

An ad on a job website says, "Urgently hiring 5 to 10 ICU nurses in the Phoenix area." There are several more ads like it posted in the last week.

The good news is that the nurses are coming.

"We've had some come from the East Coast, Tennessee, Kentucky. They come from everywhere," she said.

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She welcomes the help, but says she’s disheartened at news like this, saying this is how the virus spreads rapidly. She worries many Arizonans aren’t following CDC guidelines to stop the spread of the virus.

"It's not a joke," she remarked, adding, "A lot of people are saying it's like the flu, but it's different. It's unlike anything I've ever seen before.

For more coverage of how the state is handling the pandemic, visit this link.