Wednesday, January 21, 2009

The Model of the Future: Convenient, Affordable Healthcare and Plenty of Jobs

The chart above (click to enlarge) shows the annual percent growth in monthly employment (from the same month in the previous year) since 2004, comparing growth in the health care sector to the growth in overall total employment. Even during the recession, health care employment continues to grow at almost 3% annually, and there was an increase of 371,600 health care jobs in 2008. In contrast, overall job growth has been negative and falling since mid-2008, with a total job loss in 2008 of almost 2.6 million.

One reason for the continuing growth in health care employment might be provided in this story: "As Retail-Based Clinics Grow, So Do Jobs for Specialty Nurses":

The proliferation of health clinics in retail stores has created hundreds of job opportunities for advanced nurse practitioners — a primary-care specialty whose ranks are growing at a time when the number of family doctors continues to decline.

“I love the concept,” said advanced nurse practitioner Marina Ordiner said. “I think it’s the model of the future. It’s convenient, it’s affordable.” What she likes best is having the ability to spend more time with patients.


At 1/21/2009 6:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very few of the increased health-related jobs are specialty nurses. It takes a minimum of five years of education to go from high school grad to nurse practitioner. Almost all the nurses recently hired by new clinics left the jobs they had in hospitals or physician offices.

Most of the new jobs in healthcare are lower level positions (nursing home workers, phlebotomists, nurse technicians, and LPNs). More positions with higher skill requirements are opening up, but the education and training pipeline must get wider.

At 1/21/2009 9:27 PM, Blogger save_the_rustbelt said...

Advance practice nurses,as Dr. T. reports, make up a tiny percentage of nurses (exact stats are hard to come by, as licensing boards do not use uniform stat reporting).

And the clinics (using the umbrella concept of "immediate care clinics") are a tiny percentage of services provided, although an admittedly growing sector.


And now we are starting to see layoffs in health care as fewer people can afford anything but emergent treatment.

This looks like a major exercise in jumping to conclusions.

At 1/22/2009 6:44 AM, Blogger stilettoheels said...

Healthcare employment is divided into four major occupational categories [percent increase in year over year employment to December 2008]:

Ambulatory Health (Code 621) [3.51%]
Hospitals (Code 622) [3.04%]
Nursing & Care (Code 623) [1.27%]
Social Assistance (Code 624) [2.74%]

About 60% of registered nurses are employed in hospitals and the BLS nurse occupational handbook is here.

At 1/22/2009 8:01 AM, Blogger The Happy Hospitalist said...

Nurse Practioners are not primary care specialists. That title requires seven years of doctor level training. Primary care can be fractured into parts, but if you want to take care of patients who are sick, you must have a full knowledge base, not just bits and pieces.

I would be more apt to call these nurse pracitoners specialists in Minute Clinics. Minute Clinics is not primary care. Not even close.

At 1/23/2009 9:07 AM, Blogger Bruce Hall said...

... and in ten years this will be called the "health care bubble." The economy just doesn't like aberrations over the long term.

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