The health system reconfigures its labor force in times of shortage

As nurses seek higher salaries, hospital labor costs continue to rise, requiring providers to relocate their labor.

According to Kaufman Hall’s data, from October 2020 to October 2021, total labor costs increased by 12.6%, and from October 2019 to October 2021 increased by 14.8% analyze About 900 hospitals. The report concluded that the full-time equivalent of each adjustment fell by 4.5% year-on-year, while the labor cost after each adjustment increased by 16.3%, indicating that wage increases caused by labor shortages across the country are pushing up labor costs rather than increasing staffing levels.

Kaufman Hall senior vice president Erik Swanson (Erik Swanson) said: “We continue to see labor costs increase much faster than you usually think.” “Compare the increase in labor costs with the decline in discharge rates. By comparison, we can see how higher acute care, longer hospital stays, higher wages, and contract labor support are driving a real dramatic increase in labor costs.”

Common mental health Financial indicators reflect national trends. In the quarter ended September 30, labor costs in 140 hospital systems increased by 16.3% year-on-year, mainly due to increases in contract labor costs, insurance premiums, and overtime pay.

Therefore, CommonSpirit is redesigning its staffing model. It allows virtual registered nurses to assume management responsibilities, such as supervising unlicensed personnel, in order to reduce the burden of on-site registered nurses. In the past year, CommonSpirit has used a team-based patient care model in its Iowa branch, using pharmacists, nurse practitioners, nursing assistants, and paramedics. The organization stated in its latest earnings report that it plans to roll out the model throughout the system within the next five years.

Tang Lili, chief network and affiliate officer at the University of Alabama Birmingham School of Medicine, said the contract labor rate has been out of control.

“If we cannot find stable income for many of these safety net hospitals, we are really worried about what will happen in the next two to four years,” he said. “CARES funding has benefited some hospitals. However, once the pandemic is smaller than it is now, the costs associated with having to pay nurses to compete with staffing agencies and other providers will not disappear.”

UPMC Compared with the same period last year, labor costs in the first nine months of 2021 have risen by nearly 5%.

Due to staff shortages, the transfer time between hospitals is increasing.As the labor market tightens, both COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 patients are turned away Practitioners leave the industry, Hospital executives and industry observers said.

“Nurses are leaving rural hospitals to travel to larger cities, becoming traveling nurses or working at physical retailers such as Wal-Mart to get higher pay. The pressure of this epidemic has also made many nurses and administrators talk enough And retire early. No one can blame them,” said Michael Topcick, the national leader of the Chattis Rural Health Center, adding that some nurses also COVID-19 vaccine regulations“This has caused costs to skyrocket.”

Health system executives say it is more difficult to find specialist nurses, such as those with expertise in neurology and intensive care.

President and CEO Dr. Jeffrey Balser said that Vanderbilt University Medical Center is trying to fill this gap with telemedicine and advanced practice providers, but there is still a mismatch between supply and demand.

“We must ensure that the licenses of all practitioners we use are of the highest level,” he said.

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