Workforce Data — Volume 4
Robust Healthcare Job Growth Forges Ahead
Healthcare job growth in the United States continued its steady upward pace in March, with no sign of slacking off. The latest seasonally adjusted preliminary statistics from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics showed that the healthcare industry overall added 36,800 jobs last month. The bulk of growth happened in ambulatory health care centers, which added more than 27,000 jobs, while the hospital sector added 10,200 jobs.
On a broader level, the BLS stated that March healthcare job growth numbers were in line with the average monthly gain over the prior 12 months. Steady monthly growth registered the addition of more than a half-million jobs—about 503,000—over the past 12 months.
Hiring a Doctor? Check with the Spouse First
Rural healthcare organizations looking to hire physicians often have to please someone other than the physician: the physician’s spouse. Research published in March in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) concludes that it’s going to be harder for an organization to hire a married physician with a highly educated spouse to work in a rural underserved area.
The study’s authors analyzed data about physicians between the ages of 25 and 70 from the Decennial Census and the American Community Survey. They found that the rate of married physicians with a highly educated spouse working in a rural Health Professional Shortage Area, or HPSA, was 4.2%, compared with the 7.2% rate for married physicians without highly educated spouses. They also found that single physicians were less likely to work in HPSAs, too, with a rate of 4.1%.
Florida in Dire Need of RNs
Florida, the nation’s third most populous state, is sorely lacking in registered nurses, according to a new study by the Florida Center for Nursing.
In a January 2016 report entitled “Florida’s Demand for Nurses: 2015 Employer Survey, there were 12,495 vacant positions for RNs last year—and the situation is getting worse. The study predicts there will be 9,947 new RN positions created in 2016 that also will have to be filled.
The study notes that the highest median turnover rates for RNs tended to be in home healthcare agencies and skilled nursing facilities. Turnover rates were lowest in hospitals, hospices and public health departments.
It’s not just RNs that are increasingly in demand, the authors noted. Home healthcare agencies have a growing number of LPN vacancies, for example. The report predicts that 4,700 new LPN positions will be created in 2016. Positions requiring advanced degrees are also going unfilled.
Florida’s increasing demand for nurses will be influenced by an aging population, population growth and the impending retirement of nurses in the Baby Boom cohort. The report concluded with a recommendation that the state increase activities to improve its retention of nurses and its commitment to create a talent pool to effectively meet the state’s future needs.