LEESBURG, Fla. - A Florida-based app is helping connect nurses with jobs, allowing working nurses to choose their own hours and helping to fill the staffing gap at healthcare facilities. It's called Gale.
Shawntell Thorton, of Ocala, Florida, is a nurse and a mom. Juggling both can be tough, but the Gale app has helped her, she said.
"If you have kids, it’s great actually," she said.
She's looking for as many hours as she can, but with raising her 7-year-old daughter, she needs flexibility to choose her own hours.
"You can literally in one click… I can make the money, and it’s keeping me afloat in life in between jobs," she said.
Gale's popularity has exploded. More than 70,000 nurses across 40 states use the app, FOX 35 has learned.
"Florida has a large elderly population, so healthcare is a big part of the economy," said Tony Braswell, president and founder of Gale Healthcare Solutions. "So the need here is greater than most states because other people retire out here, and they get older and need healthcare."
He described Gale as the "Uber for nurses," which helps connect nurses to nursing homes, assist liven centers, and other healthcare facilities that need additional staff.
"Let’s say if I feel like I want to go to work at 3 [p.m.], 3 p.m. to 11 p.m., I’d get on my app, put in my availability, and then I’ll have invites to work different places and areas and I can go through and filter at the pay, the distance, and see which one fits best in my schedule to my liking and I choose to pick it up," Thornton said.
It's also reportedly helping to curb the shortage of nurses that's impacting facilities across the nation, especially after the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to a recent AARP Florida report, an estimated 400,000 nursing home workers left their jobs between January 2020 and January 2022.
"It gives that nurse thinking about getting out of the industry a flexible schedule that she can work when she wants to and not go and drive for Uber and not work to ship and deliver groceries," said Braswell.
Nurses are paid right after they complete their shift
"When I’m in between jobs and I want to make extra money when I have bills and extra things going on it’s just easy," she said.