John R. Callen is the CEO of MedRehab Alliance. In the following article, John Callen discusses the current challenges of healthcare staffing, causes, and why shortages of quality employees are on the rise.
Following the COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent surge in job opportunities for healthcare professionals, many hospitals and other medical organizations are facing recruiting challenges. With hospitals in a worse-than-usual state of disrepair, it seems that every healthcare professional is in high demand. As such, many organizations are now finding it difficult to attract the staff they need.
John R. Callen of MedRehab Alliance will shed some light on the current challenges faced by healthcare organizations and offer suggestions for addressing these issues, as well as determining the cause of these challenges and potential solutions.
John R. Callen on the Lack of Qualified Healthcare Professionals
One of the primary challenges facing many hospitals and other medical organizations today is a shortage of qualified healthcare professionals. Because so many workers have left their positions, either to work remotely or because they are wary of potentially contracting COVID-19, there simply aren’t enough people available to fill open positions or take on extra shifts explains Callen.
Unfortunately, this problem is compounded by the fact that many healthcare workers are not in a position to work remotely, as they are typically on-site care providers. This means that healthcare organizations must rely on contractors or temporary staff to fill the gaps left by their permanent employees, meaning hospitals are being filled with underqualified or under-credentialed workers.
Missing Information on Healthcare Professionals
Callen says that another challenge facing the healthcare industry is a lack of accurate and up-to-date information regarding healthcare professionals. While there are plenty of online databases available, many organizations do not have access to these databases or may be unable to search them effectively.
This can lead to costly mistakes and wasted time as recruiters send out offers that are ultimately rejected by applicants.
To address these issues, John R. Callen says that some hospitals and healthcare organizations are now turning to third-party staffing agencies to help them fill vacant positions. These agencies use more advanced databases that enable recruiters to search for potential candidates more efficiently and effectively, helping them quickly find the right professionals for their needs.
Additionally, these agencies often have extensive networks of healthcare professionals who they are able to reach out to, meaning that hospitals can access a wider pool of applicants and fill their positions more quickly.
Reduced Staffing Budgets
John R. Callen of MedRehab Alliance says that besides not having the staff they need to fill job openings, many medical organizations also lack the financial resources to put together attractive packages for top candidates, resulting in lost talent and overworked staff who are struggling to keep up.
This issue is exacerbated by the fact that hospitals and other healthcare organizations typically have limited budgets for staffing and recruiting, making it difficult for them to compete with larger or more well-funded competitors who could potentially offer higher salaries or more enticing bonuses and flexible schedules.
A similar solution is being used by hospitals and other medical organizations to address this issue: outsourcing. By enlisting the help of third-party staffing agencies, hospitals can gain access to a larger pool of candidates, making it easier for them to fill their positions with the right professionals, although these agencies often charge a fee for their services, which is only worsening the debt of hospitals.
The Causes of the Healthcare Staffing Issues
With staffing problems across the healthcare industry, it is important to understand what factors are contributing to these issues and how they can be addressed.
Fear of COVID-19
Working on the frontline of healthcare comes with some inherent risks, and the recent outbreak of COVID-19 has diminished many workers’ confidence in their ability to do their jobs safely, seriously affecting nurse performance. As such, Callen says that many professionals in this field have backed out of their positions, either voluntarily or via firing.
Lack of Focus on Retention
With so much time and effort being dedicated to recruitment, many healthcare organizations lack the resources or knowledge necessary to retain their workforce. While there are some basic retention strategies that can be implemented, such as offering competitive salaries and benefits packages, many hospitals simply do not have the time, money, or manpower to implement these programs effectively.
Changing Demographics of Healthcare Staff
In addition to being wary about the risks of working in a hospital, many healthcare professionals are also seeking out positions with higher pay and more flexible schedules reports John R. Callen of MedRehab Alliance. As such, hospitals need to be able to adapt quickly and offer higher salaries or more enticing benefits packages in order to compete for talent against larger, flexible organizations that can afford these perks.
As the healthcare industry continues to grow and change, the challenges of staffing will only become more complex. At the same time, John R. Callen explains that new technologies and strategies are emerging that can help hospitals overcome these problems and fill their vacancies with top talent.
By understanding the causes of these issues and exploring some potential solutions, medical organizations can better prepare themselves to compete for top candidates and maintain a strong workforce.