Health care employment climbs by 34,300 jobs in April

Total unemployment rate unchanged from March, according to latest figures.

Health care employment rose by 34,300 jobs in April, but overall employment in health care remained down 250,000, or 1.5%, since February 2020, the time before the COVID-19 pandemic.

Meanwhile, total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 428,000 in April as the U.S. unemployment rate was unchanged at 3.6% month to month, according to the latest report by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, published May 6.

The health care industry includes ambulatory health care services, hospitals, and nursing and residential care facilities.

The April 2022 health care employment figure reflected a gain in ambulatory health care services, which increased by 27,900 jobs in April to more than 8.12 million employees. The figure was up from the April 2021 total of about 7.83 million employees, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics figures.

Within the industry, employees in physicians’ offices increased by 9,800 workers to about 2.81 million. Hospital employees rose by 4,500 to about 5.14 million in April. In year-on-year comparison, both figures were larger than the respective totals of about 2.72 million and 5.12 million in April 2021

Total job gains were widespread, with increases in leisure and hospitality, manufacturing, and transportation and warehousing, according to the Bureau. But total nonfarm employment remained down by 1.2 million jobs, or .8%, from the pre-pandemic level of February 2020.

It appeared the pandemic effects were waning for some labor market measures.

In April, 7.7% of those employed worked remotely because of the pandemic, down from 10% in March. The data refer to employed people who teleworked or worked at home for pay at some point in the four weeks preceding the survey specifically because of the pandemic, according to the Bureau.

In April, there were 1.7 million workers reporting they were unable to work because their employer closed or lost business due to the pandemic; the figure was down from 2.5 million in March.