Why America Needs Nurses Now More than Ever

It’s 2022 and COVID-19 and its variants still represent a massive threat to public health. At the same time, however, a nursing shortage threatens the effectiveness of healthcare solutions for the general public. Now, estimates suggest that 1.2 million more registered nurses (RNs) will be needed by 2030 to adequately serve the populace.

This flood of demand has made RNs America’s most wanted healthcare worker. Now, we need nurses more than ever. And yet, the causes of the nursing shortage continue to rage, limiting our ability to replace retiring nursing staff.

Facing major implications for public health, evaluating and solving these causes is essential. Understanding is the first step in a healthcare environment more inviting for professional nurses.

What is Causing the Nursing Shortage?

First, let’s look at some of the measurable causes of the nursing shortage. These are observed patterns in the data that reflect bottlenecks and challenges that may come to affect the way most of us receive care in the future, should the situation not improve. These causes include:

  1. The aging population. Lifespans, birthrates, and advancing medicine have all contributed to a changing demographic. By 2030, it’s estimated that one in five people will be a senior. This is an age group that requires more care and more nurses to care for them.
  2. Retiring nurses. Similarly, healthcare workers themselves are aging up. With one-third of the workforce age 50 or older, retirements are occurring faster than nursing staff can be replaced. This is a problem exacerbated by the next cause of the worsening nursing shortage.
  3. Limited newcomers. Nursing schools can only train so many people. Meanwhile, the COVID-19 pandemic has been challenging on many learning institutions. The rate of new to retiring nurses isn’t enough to make up for lost workers, and patients are the worse for it.

All these causal factors were present in the healthcare industry even before the pandemic emerged, but COVID drove the shortage to new depths. That’s because pandemic conditions have redoubled our reliance on nursing staff and overburdened them to the point of frequent burnout.

In a survey of 6,500 critical care nurses, 66% said they were considering leaving their careers because of their COVID experiences. Meanwhile, 92% said that nurses at their hospitals had cut their careers short as a result of burnout. These numbers represent vital healthcare staff that we cannot afford to lose. And yet, the shortage is a looming threat impacting us all.

America is in desperate need of nurses but the conditions of the job as well as larger social factors make it exceptionally difficult to fill the gaps. Incentives and workloads have to be adjusted if we are to change these circumstances in the future.

In the meantime, what exactly are the implications of not enough nurses in our hospitals and care facilities? These will be the effects we’ll see play out unless this negative trend is disrupted.

The Effects of Not Enough Nurses

A world with too few nurses is a world in which no one should want to live. These care professionals fulfill many of the most important functions within a care institution. Without their work, being seen and treated for any and all health conditions would take longer and would be less effective. The consequences of such a reality would be negative for everyone involved — from the average patient to the doctor who would then have to take on a much greater burden.

As you explore the question of America’s nursing shortages, keep in mind the associated effects. These include:

  1. Longer care wait times and expenses. Nurses take care of just about all the care-related tasks that don’t require a doctor’s training to legally treat. This includes record-keeping and administrative functions. The fewer nurses available to check in with patients, move them along, and conduct vital care processes, the longer patients will have to wait for care. Meanwhile, relying on more highly trained medical staff for every procedure all but guarantees higher costs for patients.
  2. A lack of empathy in care. Empathy is essential to care. There is something healing in the simple act of a human being listening and being friendly, and nurses provide this empathy in heaps. Where it is applied in healthcare, empathy has been found to improve care satisfaction and even reduce burnout rates in hospital staff. However, human professionals are needed to practice empathy.
  3. A greater reliance on tech. Amidst nursing shortages, care practices are increasingly turning to tech to fill labor gaps. The implications of these tools are enormous. Chatbots, for instance, are taking down patient symptomsand computing diagnoses, sometimes with even greater efficiency than human workers. As these tools improve, some healthcare roles may even be automated out of existence.

A world with too few nurses presents too many challenges for society to accept. Instead, the industry looks to potential solutions for staffing and supporting care facilities while inspiring new generations of nurses. With a need this desperate, the healthcare industry must apply all the tools and tricks necessary to reduce nursing labor gaps.

A Life-Threatening Need

When it comes to healthcare, labor shortages present real risks to life and well-being. That’s why the 1.2 million nurses needed within the next eight years is a scary number. Without nurses, care is longer, worse, and more robotic. However, this last point may also be part of the solution.

Just as artificial intelligence presents certain risks to human workers (such as displacement), it can produce benefitsas well. Through automated data collection, chatbot interfaces, personal medical AI, and more, healthcare work is changing for the better. This means reduced workloads for nurses and potentially less-stressful work environments in which to care for patients.

The causes of the nursing shortage may be too widespread and human to fully correct. However, supportive technology may help to reduce the negative implications of this shortage and even encourage up-and-coming talent. Perhaps when nurses all have personal AIs to make the job easier, nursing schools won’t be able to handle the flood of compassionate individuals wanting to save lives and make a difference.

**Article Image Source: Pexels

         

      Katie Brenneman is a passionate writer specializing in lifestyle, mental health, activism-related content. When she isn’t writing, you can find her with her nose buried in a book or hiking with her dog, Charlie. To connect with Katie, you can follow her on Twitter. 


Disclaimer: The viewpoint expressed in this article is the opinion of the author and is not necessarily the viewpoint of the owners or employees at Healthcare Staffing Innovations, LLC.

Healthcare’s Most Wanted

Healthcare professionals are clearly some of the most essential workers in the country. But which are needed the most right now and where? We break it down for you.

More than a year on from the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the resulting record unemployment rate of 14.8%, the job market has begun to stabilize, nearing pre-pandemic figures—5.1% in August of 2021, compared to 3.5% in February of 2020.

Through it all, though, healthcare employment has been essential. Despite job losses in some specialties and settings, our nation has needed doctors, nurses, and the like on the frontlines in a way no other industry has seen a need for employment. Lives were literally on the line, and jobs had to be filled to save them. A sentiment that is true, once again, as hospitals fill to capacity in some parts of the country, due to the Delta variant.

What types of healthcare professionals are needed the most now, and where are they needed? We break it down for you below, according to data from our jobs site.

10 Most In-Demand Position Types:

  1. Registered Nurses
  2. Licensed Practical/Vocational Nurses
  3. Physicians
  4. Technicians
  5. Physical Therapists
  6. Certified Nursing Assistants
  7. Nurse Practitioners
  8. Speech Language Pathologists
  9. Respiratory Therapists
  10. Occupational Therapists

10 Most In-Demand Specialties:

  1. Insurance
  2. Education
  3. Intensive Care
  4. Patient Care
  5. Telemetry
  6. Home Health
  7. Customer Service
  8. Pediatrics
  9. Rehabilitation
  10. Pharmacy

10 Most In-Demand Locations:

  1. California
  2. Georgia
  3. Texas
  4. Pennsylvania
  5. Florida
  6. New York
  7. Illinois
  8. North Carolina
  9. Ohio
  10. Massachusetts

Disclaimer: The viewpoint expressed in this article is the opinion of the author and is not necessarily the viewpoint of the owners or employees at Healthcare Staffing Innovations, LLC.

Social Media Do’s and Don’ts for Medical Professionals

As COVID has prevented people from safely interacting in person, more have turned to social media. As a medical professional, here’s how to behave (or not) online.

Over the last year and a half, as COVID-19 has prevented scores of people from safely interacting in person with their family, friends, coworkers, and more, people have turned to social media in droves, not only to foster a connection, but oftentimes for medical information. So, what are the ins and outs of using social media as a medical professional? We break it down below.

Do

Counter Misinformation

It’s no secret that the internet—particularly, social media—is a place where unchecked information masquerading as fact is allowed to mostly run rampant. From anti-vaxxers to pseudoscience loyalists, social media is full of people who make your job more difficult every single day, by spreading falsehoods and, in the worst cases, putting lives at risk with their irresponsible and uninformed claims. And while it may be tempting to go on a CAPS LOCK heavy or profanity laden rant when you see this happening, it would be better to counter by debunking myths and discrediting claims using your knowledge of medical science—and, maybe, have a few medical journals at the ready for citing. Use social media to be an authoritative voice for facts online and a source of knowledge for the public.

Raise Awareness

While giving blanket medical advice on the internet is never a great idea, you can use your specialized knowledge to raise awareness about medical issues or conditions, in addition to the aforementioned debunking of misinformation. Consider this a preemptive strike against falsehoods, if you will. If you work in cardiology, for instance, you can take to social media to discuss heart-healthy nutrition, or the benefits of cardiovascular exercise. In ENT? Discuss fall risks, the dangers of undiagnosed sleep apnea, or maybe share your local allergen information on a weekly basis. As a bonus, if you share online with any regularity, it can begin to build a brand for yourself or your practice as experts in your specialty, while also raising awareness in the general population and driving locals to your practice.

Connect with Patients

Nearly 90% of older adults have used social media to seek and share health information, and 40% of young adults have turned to online tools to connect with others over their health challenges. Your patients are no exception. Engage with them on social media, where they already are, to not only augment clinical care, but to help educate, as well as provide support.

Don’t

Expose Patient Information

Obviously, by working in healthcare, you are intimately familiar with industry rules and regulations regarding patient privacy. This applies just as much, if not more so, online. It should go without saying, but we’re going to say it anyway: never, ever, ever, ever, ever disclose protected health information online in any capacity. Ever. And definitely do not share pictures or videos of patients online, unless a patient has given their consent in writing. For one, it’s a HIPAA violation, and it also isn’t doing you any favors in looking like a professional people can trust.

Patient Shame

Not too long ago, news broke of a hospital in Maine coming under fire after a “wall of shame”, aimed at mocking and humiliating disabled patients, was discovered and exposed by one of their own employees. Don’t do that. Or anything like that. In real life or online. Do not shame your patients for getting vaccinated, or even for not getting vaccinated. Do not fat shame your patients. Do not shame your patients for their level of wealth or poverty. Do not shame them for their disabilities. Do not shame your patients. Patients are entrusting you with their medical care, and in some cases, their lives, and it is your responsibility, no matter how trying they may be, or how exhausted you are, to be a consummate professional and not slander them in any way.

Bash Your Employer

Nothing online is 100% private. Anything you post online, even on a private Facebook or Twitter page, can be screen captured by someone with less than honorable intentions and it can get back to your employer. Be careful what you say online, as it can make all the difference between gainful employment and an unexpected job search—or even a lawsuit.

Disclaimer: The viewpoint expressed in this article is the opinion of the author and is not necessarily the viewpoint of the owners or employees at Healthcare Staffing Innovations, LLC.

Where Healthcare Support Salaries Are Highest & Lowest

Working in healthcare has always garnered a lot of respect, especially over the last year. But is the pay proportionate to the praise?

Working in healthcare can garner a lot of respect, as we’ve certainly seen over the last year with many in the industry being hailed as heroes for working on the frontlines of the pandemic.

However, is the pay proportionate to the praise?

Below are the ten states offering the highest and the lowest average salaries for ten popular healthcare support professions, listed alphabetically, according to 2020 salary data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Diagnostic Medical Sonographers – Highest Paying States

  1. California – $108,400
  2. Hawaii – $101,570
  3. Alaska – $95,990
  4. District of Columbia – $94,260
  5. Rhode Island – $92,460
  6. Washington – $92,150
  7. Oregon – $91,550
  8. Massachusetts – $89,080
  9. Wisconsin – $86,810
  10. Colorado – $86,370

Diagnostic Medical Sonographers – Lowest Paying States

  1. Alabama – $57,870
  2. Georgia – $61,100
  3. Mississippi – $62,600
  4. West Virginia – $62,920
  5. Louisiana – $63,520
  6. Arkansas – $64,670
  7. South Dakota – $64,840
  8. Tennessee – $65,750
  9. Michigan – $66,020
  10. Kentucky – $67,520

EMTs & Paramedics – Highest Paying States

  1. Hawaii – $58,580
  2. Washington – $56,910
  3. Maryland – $53,440
  4. Alaska – $50,030
  5. California – $48,280
  6. Illinois – $48,040
  7. District of Columbia – $47,460
  8. New York – $46,920
  9. Massachusetts – $46,110
  10. Connecticut – $45,800

EMTs & Paramedics – Lowest Paying States

  1. West Virginia – $30,520
  2. Alabama – $30,770
  3. Kansas – $31,500
  4. Kentucky – $32,030
  5. Mississippi – $32,250
  6. South Dakota – $33,110
  7. Montana – $34,090
  8. Michigan – $34,410
  9. Arkansas – $34,630
  10. Ohio – $34,680

Home Health & Personal Care Aides – Highest Paying States

  1. Alaska – $35,360
  2. North Dakota – $34,020
  3. Massachusetts – $33,890
  4. Vermont – $33,810
  5. Washington – $32,860
  6. New York – $32,140
  7. District of Columbia – $31,810
  8. California – $31,270
  9. Rhode Island – $30,790
  10. Oregon – $30,730

Home Health & Personal Care Aides – Lowest Paying States

  1. Louisiana – $19,800
  2. Alabama – $20,960
  3. Mississippi – $21,520
  4. West Virginia – $21,730
  5. Texas – $21,750
  6. Oklahoma – $22,320
  7. North Carolina – $22,920
  8. Tennessee – $23,130
  9. Virginia – $23,360
  10. Arkansas – $23,510

Medical Assistants – Highest Paying States

  1. Alaska – $46,610
  2. Washington – $45,700
  3. District of Columbia – $45,340
  4. Massachusetts – $43,090
  5. Minnesota – $43,090
  6. California – $42,990
  7. Oregon – $41,700
  8. Connecticut – $41,070
  9. Hawaii – $40,530
  10. New York – $39,850

Medical Assistants – Lowest Paying States

  1. West Virginia – $29,820
  2. Alabama – $29,950
  3. Mississippi – $30,550
  4. Louisiana – $31,110
  5. Arkansas – $31,530
  6. Oklahoma – $31,790
  7. South Dakota – $31,910
  8. Kansas – $32,030
  9. New Mexico – $32,340
  10. South Carolina – $33,010

Medical Secretaries & Administrative Assistants – Highest Paying States

  1. District of Columbia – $47,110
  2. California – $46,140
  3. Washington – $45,990
  4. Massachusetts – $44,900
  5. Rhode Island – $43,740
  6. Hawaii – $43,620
  7. New Jersey – $43,130
  8. Minnesota – $42,730
  9. Oregon – $42,550
  10. New York – $42,170

Medical Secretaries & Administrative Assistants – Lowest Paying States

  1. Mississippi – $30,980
  2. Louisiana – $32,680
  3. West Virginia – $32,940
  4. Tennessee – $33,460
  5. Montana – $33,550
  6. New Mexico – $33,710
  7. Kentucky – $34,080
  8. Oklahoma – $34,200
  9. Wyoming – $35,110
  10. Florida – $35,150

Nursing Assistants – Highest Paying States

  1. Alaska – $42,500
  2. New York – $40,620
  3. California – $39,280
  4. Hawaii – $38,650
  5. Massachusetts – $37,160
  6. Oregon – $37,100
  7. District of Columbia – $36,980
  8. Washington – $36,310
  9. Minnesota – $36,040
  10. North Dakota – $35,510

Nursing Assistants – Lowest Paying States

  1. Louisiana – $24,300
  2. Mississippi – $24,400
  3. Alabama – $25,600
  4. Arkansas – $26,550
  5. Oklahoma – $27,220
  6. Missouri – $27,720
  7. South Carolina – $27,760
  8. North Carolina – $27,800
  9. Tennessee – $27,940
  10. Kentucky – $27,980

Pharmacy Technicians – Highest Paying States

  1. California – $47,620
  2. Alaska – $46,430
  3. Washington – $46,400
  4. District of Columbia – $46,240
  5. Oregon – $43,410
  6. Hawaii – $42,300
  7. North Dakota – $41,390
  8. Minnesota – $39,770
  9. Nevada – $39,390
  10. Wyoming – $39,330

Pharmacy Technicians – Lowest Paying States

  1. Kentucky – $30,370
  2. Alabama – $30,980
  3. Arkansas – $31,010
  4. Pennsylvania – $31,760
  5. West Virginia – $31,890
  6. Georgia – $32,160
  7. Ohio – $32,520
  8. Oklahoma – $32,900
  9. North Carolina – $33,300
  10. Missouri – $33,670

Phlebotomists – Highest Paying States

  1. California – $47,230
  2. New York – $44,630
  3. District of Columbia – $43,960
  4. Alaska – $43,270
  5. Washington – $42,530
  6. Massachusetts – $42,030
  7. Connecticut – $41,170
  8. Oregon – $40,560
  9. Delaware – $40,520
  10. Maryland – $40,300

Phlebotomists – Lowest Paying States

  1. South Dakota – $29,050
  2. Louisiana – $30,600
  3. Arkansas – $31,120
  4. Oklahoma – $31,400
  5. Mississippi – $31,640
  6. Missouri – $31,830
  7. Kentucky – $32,190
  8. Tennessee – $32,210
  9. Maine – $32,380
  10. Iowa – $32,430

Radiologic Technologists & Technicians – Highest Paying States

  1. California – $95,010
  2. Hawaii – $82,990
  3. District of Columbia – $82,270
  4. Alaska – $79,330
  5. Massachusetts – $78,830
  6. Washington – $77,310
  7. Oregon – $76,520
  8. Rhode Island – $74,670
  9. New York – $73,150
  10. Connecticut – $72,470

Radiologic Technologists & Technicians – Lowest Paying States

  1. Alabama – $47,300
  2. Mississippi – $48,100
  3. Arkansas – $52,290
  4. Tennessee – $53,030
  5. Kentucky – $53,090
  6. Iowa – $53,400
  7. Louisiana – $53,610
  8. West Virginia – $53,690
  9. South Dakota – $54,610
  10. Kansas – $55,770

Surgical Technologists – Highest Paying States

  1. Alaska – $67,120
  2. Nevada – $67,000
  3. California – $64,570
  4. Connecticut – $62,310
  5. District of Columbia – $61,620
  6. Minnesota – $61,300
  7. Washington – $60,450
  8. Oregon – $59,480
  9. Rhode Island – $59,410
  10. New York – $59,380

Surgical Technologists – Lowest Paying States

  1. Alabama – $38,660
  2. West Virginia – $39,890
  3. Mississippi – $41,520
  4. Louisiana – $42,140
  5. Arkansas – $42,390
  6. Iowa – $43,780
  7. South Carolina – $43,880
  8. Kentucky – $44,180
  9. Tennessee – $44,540
  10. South Dakota – $44,700

Ready to start your search for a higher paying healthcare job? Click here.

Disclaimer: The viewpoint expressed in this article is the opinion of the author and is not necessarily the viewpoint of the owners or employees at Healthcare Staffing Innovations, LLC.

Healthcare’s 5 Most In-Demand Roles, Specialties, & Locations

Unemployment in healthcare is now only 3.1% and the industry has consistently seen notable job gains over the last several months. What healthcare professionals are needed the most, and where?

In April of 2020, as COVID-19 spread rapidly through our country, the unemployment rate reached 14.8%—the highest rate observed since data collection began in 1948.

Despite being, arguably, the most needed professionals in the country during an unprecedented health emergency, the healthcare industry accounted for 6.8% of jobs lost during that time, with employment in the field declining by 1.4 million.

Over a year later, though, one could say healthcare is booming, yet again. Despite the overall unemployment rate currently sitting at 5.8%, unemployment in healthcare is now only 3.1%. The industry has consistently seen notable job gains over the last several months, including most recently when the industry added 23,000 jobs in May of 2021.

What types of healthcare professionals are needed the most? And where are they needed? We break it down for you below, according to data from our jobs site.

5 Most In-Demand Position Types:

  1. Registered Nurse
  2. Technologist/Technician
  3. Certified Nursing Assistant
  4. Licensed Practical/Vocational Nurse
  5. Physician

5 Most In-Demand Specialties:

  1. Insurance
  2. Education
  3. Patient Care
  4. Customer Service
  5. Rehabilitation

5 Most In-Demand Locations:

  1. California
  2. Texas
  3. New York
  4. Georgia
  5. Pennsylvania

Disclaimer: The viewpoint expressed in this article is the opinion of the author and is not necessarily the viewpoint of the owners or employees at Healthcare Staffing Innovations, LLC.

5 Ways to Prioritize Your Mental Health

Healthcare is rife with people who care for others, but often neglect themselves. Try these five ways to better prioritize your mental health.

Oftentimes, those who work in healthcare, spending their days caring for others, do not extend the same level of care to themselves. Maybe it’s because you’re too tired to do so at the end of the day, or perhaps, you just plain don’t know how to practice good self care. Whatever the reason, you really should take better care of yourself—particularly, your mental health.

In an industry rife with a burnout problem, on the heels of the most devastating health crisis in modern history, during Mental Health Awareness Month, if you have not been making your mental health a priority, now is certainly a good time to start.

Try these five ways to better prioritize your mental health starting now.

Start Saying No

Many who go into healthcare do so because they are drawn to serving others, they want to help. Boundaries, however, are important to set for the sake of your mental health. The word “no” (and learning to use it) has power, and it can positively impact your mental health to say no to things you do not want to or cannot do, be it because they would overwhelm you, disinterest you, or for any other reason. Saying no is not selfish, does not need to be justified, and it is something you should do regularly as part of having healthy boundaries.

Take Breaks

In the same vein as saying no, you should take time for yourself more often. Just because you can do something, or have the time in your schedule, that does not mean you need to. Slow down, rest, relax, and recharge—whatever that looks like for you, be it actually taking a lunch break or taking an entire vacation. Listen to your body and mind and give it what it needs. Everything else can wait.

Stay Active

Studies show that regular exercise can have a positive impact on depression and anxiety, and can also relieve stress, improve memory, help you sleep better, and boost your overall mood. Though you may not have time for a trip to the gym seven days a week, make time to move for at least ten to fifteen minutes every day. Take a short walk, jog with your dog, go for a swim, practice some yoga—anything that gets your heart rate up and causes you to breathe a little heavier than normal counts.

Get Some Sleep

Without good sleep, our mental health can suffer. However, mental health disorders may make it harder to sleep, causing even greater problems. Some helpful ways to get meaningful rest might include hanging blackout curtains, wearing an eye mask, taking melatonin before bed, or setting your thermostat to 65 degrees Fahrenheit for the most comfortable sleep, according to the Sleep Foundation.

Talk to Someone

Sometimes, the best way to care for yourself is to ask others for help. If you are struggling, please know you are not alone. You are just a call or text away from reaching professionals who can help you to process what you are experiencing. If you need support, reach out to them at:

  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Helpline: Call 1-800-662-HELP
  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: Call 1-800-273-TALK
  • The Crisis Text Line: Text TALK to 741741

Disclaimer: The viewpoint expressed in this article is the opinion of the author and is not necessarily the viewpoint of the owners or employees at Healthcare Staffing Innovations, LLC.

4 Ways to Spring Clean for Your Job Search

Spring is, traditionally, one of the best times to make a career move. Here’s how to spring clean for your job search, and get growing elsewhere.

Spring has arrived, and for many, it has brought with it a mindset of growth, change, and new beginnings. It is also, traditionally, one of the best times to make a career move, with employers eager to lock in and onboard new hires before Memorial Day. If you find that you are no longer blooming where you are currently planted, it may be time to set down new roots. Here’s how to spring clean for your job search, and get growing elsewhere.

Weed Out What You Don’t Want

The last year has been hard for many, especially those who work in healthcare. Take stock of what you do and do not want, and what you will and will not accept, especially in terms of your career, and figure out what roles might align with this mindset. If you have been in a demanding patient-facing role, maybe look into what non-clinical roles might be a good fit for you. Or if you have been working in a high-volume hospital, maybe it’s time to consider making a shift to a more rural setting, or into private practice. Bored with your specialty? It might be time to retrain in another. Get out of the weeds, and give yourself a chance to grow in a role better suited for you.

Tidy Up Your Resume

Once you know what you are looking for, it’s time to dust off the ol’ resume. Make sure all of the information on your resume, social media, and job search profiles is current (and, regarding social media, appropriate), and that it properly reflects what you are looking for in your next role. This article we shared at the start of the year is a great place to pick up some tips on how to revamp your resume. And, of course, we recommend you update your profile on HealthJobsNationwide.com, as well.

Branch Out via Your Network

Learning to ask for help isn’t always easy, but when it comes to your job search, it can make all the difference. “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know,” is a popular saying for a reason, and so is, “more hands make light work.” Reach out to those in your network and let them know you are on the hunt for a new opportunity. You may be surprised by just how willing your friends, old and new, will be to help you, and who they may know that you may not. Someone in-the-know could connect you to a decision maker in a more personal way than if you just applied online, or you may be able to find out about a job before it is posted, putting you at an advantage. Take the time to make new connections on social media (or in person, if you’re comfortable), and use those connections to your benefit. And be sure to take out the trash, too, while you’re at it, cutting ties with any toxic people in your life who aren’t rooting for you to win.

Nurture Yourself

Searching for a new job is not always easy. Despite demand for healthcare professionals being higher than most other industries, that does not mean there isn’t healthy competition. You may not land your dream job right away, forcing you to stay in a less satisfying role or remain unemployed. While that certainly is not ideal, it is imperative that you not get discouraged and be kind to yourself during the process. Clear out your negative thoughts, practice good self care, and rest when you need to. Nothing blooms the same day it is planted. Give it time.

Disclaimer: The viewpoint expressed in this article is the opinion of the author and is not necessarily the viewpoint of the owners or employees at Healthcare Staffing Innovations, LLC.

Our Nation’s Healthcare Workers Are Not Okay

According to the results of our recent survey on mental health, simply put, our nation’s healthcare workers are not okay. See the responses here.

Ten months ago, as COVID-19 raged through our nation, we surveyed healthcare professionals on the state of their mental health, and the responses we received painted a stark picture of what they were being asked to endure as “healthcare’s heroes”.

Now, more than a year after COVID-19 was declared a pandemic in March of 2020, we’ve again asked healthcare professionals about their mental state, and the results are grim, to say the least.

Despite COVID-19 vaccinations ramping up across the country, and cases of the virus continuing to trend downward, according to the responses shared with us, our nation’s healthcare workers are, simply put, not okay.

The survey, which saw responses from registered nurses, advanced practitioners, respiratory therapists, and more, asked healthcare professionals to rate their current mental health, as well as their mental health prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. On average, prior to the pandemic, respondents ranked their mental health as an 8.23 out of 10, with 1 being very poor and 10 being excellent. 4.06 out of 10 is how the same respondents ranked their current mental health a year into the pandemic, down from an average of 5.44 out of 10 when we posed the same question in May of 2020.

Respondents also clearly expressed just how much they feel the pandemic has worsened their mental health (9/10) and, though vaccinations provide a promising outlook for a return to some semblance of normalcy, when asked how much they feel the approval and administration of COVID-19 vaccines has improved their mental health, the average response was a dismal 5.69 out of 10.

The average results were as follows, including selected quotes from respondents.

On a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being very poor and 10 being excellent, how would you rate your mental health prior to the COVID-19 pandemic?
Average Answer: 8.21/10

On a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being very poor and 10 being excellent, how would you rate your current mental health?
Average Answer: 4.06/10

On a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being very low and 10 being very high, how would you rate your level of work-related stress prior to the COVID-19 pandemic?
Average Answer: 6.03/10

On a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being very low and 10 being very high, how would you rate your current level of work-related stress?
Average Answer: 8.09/10

On a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being very poor and 10 being excellent, how well do you believe you are coping with your work-related stress?
Average Answer: 4.81/10

Most Commonly Used Coping Mechanisms:
1. Talking to Family/Friends
2. Humor
3. Physical Activity
4. Tie: Prescription Medication & Other
5. Avoidance
6. Yoga/Meditation
7. Alcohol
8. Therapy
9. Recreational Drugs

On a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being very little and 10 being very much, how much do you feel your job negatively impacts your mental health?
Average Answer: 7.59/10

On a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being very little and 10 being very much, how much do you feel the COVID-19 pandemic has worsened your mental health?
Average Answer: 9.00/10

On a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being very little and 10 being very much, how important do you feel your mental health is to your employer?
Average Answer: 4.81/10

On a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being not very often and 10 being very often, how often have you considered quitting your job in the past year?
Average Answer: 7.06/10

On a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being very little and 10 being very much, how much do you feel the approval and administration of COVID-19 vaccines has improved your mental health?
Average Answer: 5.69/10

Is there anything else you would like to tell us?

“I’m really sick of all this. Management has the expectation that we keep giving and giving with no end in sight.”

“Nurses and other healthcare workers should be acknowledged with better pay and benefits (especially mental health). It will be interesting to see how many workers are diagnosed with PTSD in the coming months and years.”

“I actually did step out of the nursing field for now due to the impact on my mental health and am seeking professional help/intervention.”

“I think overall the entire pandemic situation has been terribly managed on both a federal and corporate levels. I would go in to more detail but I can already feel my blood pressure going up! But thanks for asking!”

“The lack of support from management, working short staffed every day, wearing PPE that is not for medical use, the lack of transparency, the overall mental health of patients, increase in meth, alcohol, and heroin use, the constant mental abuse from patients has made me consider selling my house, changing my lifestyle, and getting rid of my car so I can leave my career behind before it takes every last bit of my sanity and potentially my life.”

“Half of our staff has left to do travel nursing for 3X what they were making. These are seasoned nurses with years of experience. These nurses are not being replaced, we have 3 travelers to replace the 22 that have left since December. We are working extremely, dangerously short staffed with nurses who have NO ICU experience & management does not offer a plan. I know more will be leaving.”

“Each time I hear the government tell people not to wear masks I get stressed worrying about more deaths from COVID. The public trying to promote COVID as a government conspiracy. Most of the people who are recovering from COVID do not return to the normal life they had before COVID. ”

“I DID quit. I retired a year earlier than I had planned just to get away from the stress. I have been doing temporary gig work and LOVE it. Get to do the job and go home.”

“I feel management and the organization is doing very little to help the bedside nurse feel better during this pandemic. They are almost trying to make things worse.”

“If I were home all the time and not working with the kids and other staff, I would be much worse.”

Prior to the pandemic, multiple occupations within the field were already considered high stress and the suicide risk was identified as being higher among nurses than any other profession, making the findings especially alarming. With experts predicting an escalating mental health crisis for Americans as a whole, it is especially important for healthcare professionals to be aware of their mental health, and to seek help as needed.

If you are struggling with your mental health, we urge you to ask for help. You are just a call or text away from reaching professionals who can assist you in processing what you are experiencing. Reach out to them, if you need support at:

  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA’s) Disaster Distress Hotline: Call 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746.
  • The Crisis Text Line: Text TALK to 741741.
  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: Call 1-800-273-TALK.

Disclaimer: The viewpoint expressed in this article is the opinion of the author and is not necessarily the viewpoint of the owners or employees at Healthcare Staffing Innovations, LLC.

Survey: A Year into the Pandemic, How Is Your Mental Health?

One year after being declared a pandemic, COVID-19 is still here. As someone who works in healthcare, how is your mental health now? Tell us here.

On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic.

Since that time, more than 28 million Americans have contracted the virus, with over 500,000 of them, sadly, succumbing to it, and healthcare’s heroes, as you have often been called, have seen it all.

And we see you.

Working in healthcare can be incredibly draining—mentally, physically, and emotionally. Especially when you take into account the fact that many positions within the field are considered high-stress occupations, and that the suicide risk among nurses is higher than any other profession. Add in a full year of an unprecedented pandemic, and that can be a lot for anyone to handle, hero or otherwise.

So, a year on, we wanted to check in on you, gather your thoughts, share them with your peers. How is your mental health? How are you coping, or not coping, right now? Have you considered leaving your job? Did the approval of multiple COVID-19 vaccines help your mental health?

Tell us in the survey below, and then be sure to read our tips on how to care for yourself while treating COVID-19 patients by clicking here.

Name:*
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Are you working on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic in any capacity?*
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On a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being very poor and 10 being excellent, how would you rate your current mental health?*
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On a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being very low and 10 being very high, how would you rate your level of work-related stress prior to the COVID-19 pandemic?*
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Is there anything else you would like to tell us?

By submitting this form, you are giving your permission to HealthJobsNationwide.com to republish any responses included on this form in future content that may be used on our website or social media accounts.

Verify You're a Human:

If you are struggling with your mental health, we urge you to ask for help. You are just a call or text away from reaching professionals who can assist you in processing what you are experiencing. Reach out to them, if you need support at:

  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA’s) Disaster Distress Hotline: Call 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746.
  • The Crisis Text Line: Text TALK to 741741.
  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: Call 1-800-273-TALK.

Disclaimer: The viewpoint expressed in this article is the opinion of the author and is not necessarily the viewpoint of the owners or employees at Healthcare Staffing Innovations, LLC.

Winter Blues? Here Are Healthcare Jobs in Warm Locales.

If this weather has you dreaming of warmer locales, here are the 5 cities with the warmest average temps in February, and their most in-demand healthcare jobs.

This month, a record-breaking deep freeze impacted most of the United States, leaving more than 70% of the lower 48 states blanketed in snow and millions without power. If this weather has you dreaming of warmer locales, here are the five cities with the warmest average temperatures in February, and the most in-demand healthcare jobs in each location, according to data from our job board.

1. Miami, FL

Average Temperature in February: 70.0°
Most In-Demand Healthcare Jobs:
1. Registered Nurse
2. Respiratory Therapist
3. Physician
4. Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist
5. Dental Assistant
Search All Jobs in Miami, FL →

2. Palm Springs, CA

Average Temperature in February: 64.5°
Most In-Demand Healthcare Jobs:
1. Registered Nurse
2. Physician
3. Speech Language Pathologist
4. Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist
5. Physical Therapist
Search All Jobs in Palm Springs, CA →

3. Tampa, FL

Average Temperature in February: 63.2°
Most In-Demand Healthcare Jobs:
1. Registered Nurse
2. Licensed Practical/Vocational Nurse
3. Certified Nursing Assistant
4. Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist
5. Physician
Search All Jobs in Tampa, FL →

4. Phoenix, AZ

Average Temperature in February: 59.8°
Most In-Demand Healthcare Jobs:
1. Registered Nurse
2. Medical Assistant
3. Certified Nursing Assistant
4. Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist
5. Physical Therapist
Search All Jobs in Phoenix, AZ →

5. Los Angeles, CA

Average Temperature in February: 58.9°
Most In-Demand Healthcare Jobs:
1. Registered Nurse
2. Physician
3. Licensed Practical/Vocational Nurse
4. Speech Language Pathologist
5. Nurse Practitioner
Search All Jobs in Los Angeles, CA →

Disclaimer: The viewpoint expressed in this article is the opinion of the author and is not necessarily the viewpoint of the owners or employees at Healthcare Staffing Innovations, LLC.