September 28, 2022

Florida’s healthcare system is in trouble; legislators must act fast

Today almost every industry is facing a workforce shortage.  But unlike restaurants and retail, most healthcare entities need to be staffed 24-7, 365 days a year. 

For healthcare frontline workers there has been little to no break for more than 18-months and making matters worse, they are now experiencing a compounded crisis exacerbated by high burnout rates.

These are fields that cannot replace workers at the same pace at which they’re leaving.

Over 21.4 million people call the Sunshine State home, and 4.5 million are over 65.  Soon the state will not be able to handle the healthcare needs of our residents.

The ranks of nursing professionals and home care aides for the aging Baby Boomers are dwindling due to stress and burnout, and inadequate numbers of younger individuals seeking to enter the nursing profession are adding to the current crisis. 

A new report commissioned by the Florida Hospital Association and the Safety Net Hospital Alliance of Florida reflects a 25% turnover rate for Florida nurses overall with even higher turnover rates of 35% for licensed practical nurses and certified nursing assistants (CNA). 

Health care professionals and supporters demonstrate over staffing shortages and overworked medical professionals outside of Methodist Medical Center in Oak Ridge, Tenn. on Thursday, October 21,

The shortages situation is not just impacting providers in facilities, it’s impacting the state’s overall ability to deliver healthcare services in Florida.  In October, the Home Care Association of America conducted a survey of  its 4,000-member agencies confirming this trend. Preliminary results show:

●      66% had 10 to 40 home care aide vacancies;

●      42%  are denying 11-20 cases each month; 12% denying 21-40 cases a month due to staff shortages;

https://www.tallahassee.com/story/opinion/2021/12/17/floridas-healthcare-system-trouble-legislators-must-act-fast-opinion/8919251002/