Do You Know Your Healthcare Workers Biggest Pain Points?
2020 has brought many challenges to the field of healthcare. But even before the pandemic, healthcare workers struggled with a number of industry issues that made it difficult to advance in some positions, while experiencing a worker shortage that caused burnout. What are healthcare workers’ biggest pain points today?
What Challenges do Healthcare Workers Face?
Overwork even before COVID-19 has caused an epidemic of burnout in the healthcare field. In 2019, the Advisory Board reported more than 40% of male and 50% of female doctors reported burnout symptoms. ScienceDaily reported one-third to one-half of nurses said they were burned out in 2019. They even reported 60% of medical students and residents felt the same way. While this is a huge problem, these numbers also affect patient safety and clinical care quality. The problem is that there simply aren’t enough clinical providers to handle patient loads. The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) reports we’ll see a shortage of nearly 122,000 doctors by 2032.
Not enough staff is a big problem because it means that it’s harder for healthcare workers to take the time they need off to recover from burnout. While some healthcare organizations sought the use of traveling nurses and locum tenens, the reality during COVID is that many staffing agencies may not be able to find workers willing to take on the added risk of travel during these challenging times.
A lack of advancement means that healthcare workers are stuck in their current roles. Becker’s Hospital Review identified 49% of nurses said it was a big problem, along with 52% of other healthcare professionals. A lack of advancement can contribute to burnout; these clinical professionals may disengage from their jobs and grow frustrated by the dead-end they perceive. Finding the right opportunity with training, education reimbursement, flexible work schedules, and in-house hiring opportunities is important to these workers who feel stuck and disillusioned.
Salaries are also stuck; Becker’s repots 40% of healthcare workers say they simply don’t make enough for the effort they put in along with the training it takes to do their job. The good news here is that the number is less than 50%, so it’s obvious that there are some healthcare workers that feel they are adequately compensated for their position. However, many workers believe they should receive hazard pay during the COVID-19 crisis.
Organizational culture is frequently cited as a pain point. This is a common concern in most industries, including the healthcare field. Whether it’s high-pressure jobs in busy hospitals or the arduous nature of home care, America’s healthcare workers say it’s not the work itself that is troubling but the culture of their employer.
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