Labor shortages in the hospitality and retail industries have often been the topic of conversation in 2021, but what about the healthcare industry? According to a data brief the American Hospital Association shared, the pandemic has caused significant workforce shortages at medical practices. Here are just a few of the staggering takeaways from this publication:
- A 30% increase in job vacancies for nursing personnel occurred between 2019 and 2020, making facilities short on staff for the 2020 pandemic.
- Due to COVID-19, staff turnover has increased from 18% to 30% in certain hospital departments, including emergency and intensive care units.
- At the rate we’re headed, the U.S. will see a shortage of 3.2 million healthcare workers by 2026, thanks in part to the pandemic.
In even more sobering news, the AAMC (Association of American Medical Colleges) predicts the United States could see a shortage of up to 124,000 physicians by 2034 in primary and specialty care alike. “The pandemic . . . has underscored the vital role that physicians and other health care providers play in our nation’s health care infrastructure and the need to ensure we have enough physicians to meet America’s needs,” says David J. Skorton, MD, the AAMC’s President and CEO.
The good news is that technology has the potential to help offset some of these labor shortages. Here are a few ways that digital patient engagement platforms help alleviate the problem.
Less Burnout Prevents Turnover
A study conducted by the AMA (American Medical Association) examining over 20,000 different doctors and other healthcare workers discovered that nearly half of them (49%) have experienced burnout this year. Not only does burnout lead to more resignations, those resignations then lead to additional burnout for the organizations they leave behind. By adopting a more digital workflow through a digital patient engagement platform, burnout is diminished: it automatically handles administrative tasks like registration and insurance validation, and good ones have the ability to reduce documentation time for providers by up to 70%.
See More Patients Who Deferred Treatments & Caused Backlogs
Through mid-2020, over 41% of adults in the U.S. decided to delay or avoid medical care due to COVID-19 fears. This has created a significant backlog in patients who are choosing to return to their providers now that they feel more protected by vaccinations. This sudden growth in patient volume often equates to more staff on hand to care for these patients. However, digital patient engagement platforms allow the same number of providers to see an additional 2 patients per day, potentially preventing the need to hire more staff in the long run.
Keep Patients Contactless to Avoid COVID-19 Spread
The more doctors see patients in person, the more potential there is to spread COVID-19 even further, exacerbating the problem that caused these labor shortages in the first place. Telemedicine has become increasingly popular since 2020: it has seen an increase in growth of 6,000% since COVID-19 began, and for good reason. Not only does telemedicine software promote a contactless workflow, it also saves a significant amount of time for both the provider and patient. This time saved for the provider ultimately reduces the need to hire more staff at practices.
DocResponse Alleviates the Healthcare National Labor Shortage
DocResponse’s clinic workflow solution not only overcomes some of the challenges the labor shortage has caused but also prevents them. With their all-in-one solution, expect:
- Less staff and provider burnout, minimizing the number of resignations
- An increase in patients seen each day, decreasing the need to hire
- A more contactless workflow, promoting public health and saving time
From their single-click telehealth solution to social distancing software designed to keep people out of waiting rooms, DocResponse is the most proactive way to battle the staffing issues the pandemic continues to cause.
Schedule a demo to learn more about how DocResponse will become your new best employee!