The American Hospital Association (AHA) released Strengthening the Healthcare Workforce, the first of a three-part series to help hospital and health system leaders develop immediate, near- and long-term workforce strategies providing key considerations and questions to drive action, as well as resources and case studies.
The report is informed by work from an AHA board-appointed taskforce, charged with identifying and activating efforts to rescue our current workforce and assure the future supply of needed healthcare professionals.
“America’s healthcare workforce is the heart of healthcare,” said Rick Pollack, AHA president and CEO. “The AHA has sounded the alarm repeatedly that our workforce is in crisis, and the national emergency demands immediate attention from healthcare leaders and policymakers at every level of government. As part of our ongoing efforts to support the field, we have developed this new guide with strategies and resources that can help hospital and health system leaders navigate these complex challenges.”
“Despite the most trying of circumstances, our healthcare workforce continues to give of themselves to offer healing and consolation, night and day, day-in and day-out,” said Ron Werft, president and CEO of Cottage Health and chair of the AHA Task Force on Workforce. “There is no higher priority than ensuring that we care for the caregiver, that we make our working environment safe and that we foster the ability for individuals to have joy in their work.”
Hospitals and health systems across the country are stepping up to tackle the complex issues driving the nation’s workforce emergency as the COVID-19 pandemic has stretched the resilience of the healthcare workforce to the brink. Various reports find stress, trauma, burnout and behavioral health disorders among our caregivers are at historic levels. In addition, workforce shortages combined with an aging population, a rise in chronic diseases and increasing rates of behavioral health conditions all contribute to a national emergency that demands immediate attention and action.
The release focuses on:
- addressing well-being,
- supporting behavioral health,
- and workplace violence prevention.
Future sections will cover topics including:
- data and technology,
- recruitment and retention strategies,
- diversity, equity and inclusion,
- and creative staffing models.