Research finds healthcare saw less job less during pandemic

September 21, 2022:- Reported unemployment rates among healthcare workers did not rise as much as those for workers in other areas during the pandemic, according to research publicized Monday in JAMA.

Healthcare workers registered unemployment rates of 2.28% compared to 3.82% among non-healthcare employees just before the pandemic. Amidst the pandemic, unemployment rates among healthcare workers increased to 3.18%, while those for non-healthcare workers grew to 6.13%, according to the study.

When the COVID-19 pandemic struck the U.S. in March 2020, workers across all enterprises suffered significant job losses. As per the data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the U.S. lost 1.4 million healthcare jobs that April, depicting about 7% of the nation’s total monthly casualties.

Most of those lost healthcare positions have since been recovered. According to the most delinquent monthly data from the BLS, engagement in the sector is down 0.2%, or 37,000 jobs, from February 2020.

But yet, health systems are facing widespread burnout and difficulties recruiting and retaining enough staff after those who toiled the front lines of the pandemic reassess their roles.

To estimate unemployment rates during the pandemic among healthcare employees, JAMA researchers looked at current population survey data from January 2015 to April 2022 among a selection of more than 500,000 respondents working in a hospital or health services function. Most surveyed were female, non-Hispanic White, and hold bachelor’s degrees.

The study uncovered that workers, therapists, technicians, aides, and other healthcare workers in lower-paying positions saw more significant gains in reported unemployment rates relative to physicians.

Researchers saw that reported unemployment rises among women, non-Hispanic Black, Hispanic, and older cohorts were not significantly diverse than those among men, non-Hispanic White, and younger cohorts.