Health care still shedding jobs

Keith A. Reynolds

The health care labor market continues to hemorrhage jobs as the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic wages on.

According toa new release from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, health care employment dropped by 30,000 in January with nursing care facilities, home health care services, and community care facilities for the elderly all seeing losses. Since last February, the health care industry is down 542,000 jobs.

The economic impact isn’t limited to the health care sector, with the number of unemployed people declining by 10.1 million to bringing unemployment to 6.3 percent. The bureau notes that while this is an improvement from April, unemployment remains well above where it was before the onset of the pandemic.

Overall, non-farm employment saw an increase of 49,000 jobs in January, but the market is still down 9.9 million jobs, or 6.5 percent, from last February, the release says.

The unemployment numbers come on the heels of a recent study from The Joint Commission which gathered the comments of more than 2,000 health care workers on what is causing their burnout.

The issues cited most by health care organizations across all settings were the need for increased communication with staff, increased work from home, and staffing shortages.