Linda A Curtis, LMSW
"The Great Resignation"
This is the time of the "Great Resignation"
We are seeing thousands and thousands of nurses, physicians and other medical professionals walk away from their chosen profession. The home health aide shortage- growing over the past 20 years is at it's worst in this country.
Over 333,000 professionals left the field in 2021.
A recent survey showed that up to 47% Of U.S. Healthcare workers plan to leave their positions by 2025.
There appear to be a number of reasons this is occurring; burn out from the stresses put on the system by COVID is certainly at the top of this list. But this has been a problem that has been growing slowly and insidiously for many years. The medical fields have become more and more corporate in nature. Profit over patient care seems to now be the rallying cry for these gigantic health care insurance, pharmaceutical.... companies. David Cutler from Hartford found Cutler found three driving forces behind high health care costs—administrative expenses, corporate greed and price gouging, and higher utilization of costly medical technology.
Families cannot find home health aides to help with their elderly and infirm elder loved ones. Nursing homes cannot find enough staff to fill even minimum staffing standards.
"More than two in three (68%) of people who needed healthcare during the past six months experienced delays or challenges in getting the care they need."
As a result of this growing shortage our national treasures - our elderly are often being left to die uncared for and alone. Many aides have gone into offering only private care- in my region that runs $28 - $40 an hour. The cost of private care is impossible for most Americans- so what is left? Medicare does not pay for home health aide care. This is a big surprise for many Americans who expect that Medicare will take care of them in their old age.