Employment in healthcare has been the fastest growing sector in New York since 2000 and is expected to continue this trend. Last fall, the Center for Health Workforce Studies (CHWS) reported updated employment data in a publication entitled The Health Care Workforce in New York, 2014: Trends in Supply and Demand for Health Workers. In this report, CHWS assesses both the current and future demand for jobs in the healthcare sector by examining workforce trends nationally, in New York State as a whole, and by region.
Between the years 2000 and 2013, employment in health care in New York State grew by 18% with the health care sector accounting for 12% of all jobs by 2013. This number is significant compared to all other employment sectors which grew less than 1% during the same time. Even with this impressive growth, CHWS also reports on challenges that hospitals, nursing home and personal care facilities, home health care agencies, and ambulatory care providers face in hiring qualified candidates to meet their needs. Specifically, there is a shortage of trained individuals who will work off-shifts, are bilingual, or will work part-time. Additionally, agencies in various settings reported having difficulty recruiting and retaining professionals in a range of occupations including registered nurses (RNs) and medical assistants.
In New York City, employment in the health care sector grew by almost 26% between 2000 and 2013, while all other sectors grew only 4%. In 2013 hospitals accounted for the employment of 44% of all health care workers, but between 2009 and 2013 employment growth in hospital settings decreased by 1%. In this same time period, employment in the home care setting increased by 45%, followed by the ambulatory setting which increased by 10%. In the first quarter of 2014, the occupations in health care that employed the most New Yorkers were home health aides, RNs, and patient care attendants. This data is consistent with the New York State Department of Labor projections for employment growth between 2012 and 2022: home health aides are projected to grow 50.9%, personal care aids by 39.7%, medical assistants by 28.8%, and RNs by 14.1%.
New York’s delivery system is undergoing changes in the way that health care is delivered due to Medicaid redesign initiatives, such as the Delivery System Redesign Incentive Program (DSRIP). An increased emphasis on outpatient care and primary care, reduced avoidable hospitalizations, and greater integration between behavioral and physical health services is fueling demand for care coordination services. These services are intended to manage patients’ care across all settings while engaging patients in the management of their own care.
The report also focused on trends in nursing education. While the demand for RNs has continued to grow since 2009, there has been a decline in available jobs for newly graduated RNs. The report highlighted a 2014 CHWS survey of RN education programs in New York that showed that only 29% of the deans of nursing programs from across the state reported that there were “many jobs” for their newly trained RNs. This is a significant decline from 2007 when 90% of deans reported that there were “many jobs” for the new nursing graduates. The survey also illustrated a preference for Bachelor of Science Nurses (BSNs) over Associates Degree Nurses (ADNs). Thirty-three percent of deans from BSN programs reported that there were “many jobs” for their graduates compared with only 24% of deans from ADN programs. This is reflected by the fact that in 2014 the numbers of nurses graduated from BSN programs increased by 11% while the number graduated from ADN programs decreased by less than 1%. The full report can be found here on NYACH’s website.