Nurse employment and wage developments – Healthcare Economist

Current information articles have spilled a lot ink in regards to the present nurse scarcity. Based on Pew, on account of nursing shortages “Hospitals nationwide are canceling nonemergency surgical procedures, struggling to shortly discover beds for sufferers and failing to satisfy the minimal nurse-patient ratios consultants suggest.” Nursing wages are rising as properly. The Baltimore Solar experiences that the College of Maryland Medical System is planning to spend $5.1 million to recruit nurses. Nonetheless, these are anecdotal accounts. What do the info say on the nationwide stage?

A paper by Buerhaus et al. (2022) makes use of combination payroll knowledge from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and unemployment knowledge from the Present Inhabitants Survey (CPS). The info cowl the interval from February 2020 (simply earlier than the pandemic) to June 2021.

Primarily based on the info, the authors discover a decline in well being care employment that’s “unprecedented”.

By April 2020 employment had decreased most in doctor places of work (−11 p.c), outpatient care facilities (−8 p.c), and residential well being care (−7 p.c). Employment decreased least in hospitals (−2 p.c), the most important employer of RNs, partly due to an inflow of sufferers with COVID-19 and different sufferers whose care couldn’t be delayed. Nursing houses noticed solely a small decline as of April 2020 (−3 p.c), however in contrast to in different sectors, the decline in nursing houses continued into 2021. Employment in most sectors step by step returned towards prepandemic ranges over the course of 2020, besides within the nursing residence sector, the place the decline continued steadily. Employment ranges had rebounded in hospitals (−2.2 p.c), doctor places of work (−0.7 p.c), and outpatient facilities (+2.6 p.c) by June 2021. Nonetheless, fifteen months into the pandemic, complete employment in nursing houses remained 13.2 p.c decrease than it had been in February 2020

Whereas post-pandemic employment decreased only one% for registered nurses relative to a pre-pandemic baseline, these figures have been a ten% for licensed sensible or vocational nurses (LPN/LVN) and a 20% decline for nursing assistants (NAs). As some extent of context, as well being care employment has by no means decreased any yr in the course of the earlier 3 many years.

Nurse wages even have risen dramatically, notably for /LVN and NAs. For hospital-based LPN/LVN and NAs, wage progress was greater than 10% final yr.

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