Why the Worker Shortage Continues

The Wall Street Journal reported on Friday, May 7th that there are many reasons holding back potential employees from the labor market. Over 4-8 million fewer people are currently in the labor force than before the pandemic, depending upon how they are counted.

  • Fear of Covid-19, sickness (the USA still averages over 45,000 positive cases a day). If 45,000 people quarantine for 14 days, that removes approximately 500,000 from the available workforce even if they don’t get really sick
  • Lack of childcare and open schools
  • Previous employer has offered to rehire soon
  • Few job openings in their area
  • Extended jobless benefits

“I think this is just as much about a shortage in labor supply as it is about a shortage of labor demand,” Jason Furman, an economist at Harvard University commenting on the weaker than expected April jobs report, told CNBC. “If you look at April, it appears that there were about 1.1 unemployed workers for every job opening. So there are a lot of jobs out there, there is just still not a lot of labor supply.”

Census data taken in recent weeks suggests the closures of day-care centers and schools have forced millions of Americans to stay home and care for children or oversee online learning.

According to a Census Household Pulse survey taken in late March, 6.3 million people reported that they were not working because they needed to care for a child not in a school or day care. Another 2.1 million were caring for an older person.

An additional 4.1 million Americans said they were not working because of concerns about getting or spreading Covid-19.

The labor shortage should ease in 2021, but the process may take months as:

  • Vaccination rates continue to rise
  • Schools fully re-open
  • $300 per week federal unemployment bonus above and beyond what states provide, expires in September

For a more in-depth look into hiring, download the eBook: Tips for Boosting Applications and Hiring in 2021 or the myApplicants fact sheet.

To discuss hiring, onboarding and training, email agencysuccessteam@mitcsoftware.com.

Why Providers Struggle with EHR and Documentation

A big question for the future of technology in health and human services – how to make EHRs better serve the professionals delivering care? That was the focus of a discussion with Peter Flick, Chief Executive Officer of Remarkable Health, at a recent OPEN MINDS Technology & Analytics Institute.

The history of EHRs has created a challenge. Flick explained, “The best thinking in software in the 90s was, ‘let’s take our paper-based process and put it online.’ EHRs were designed to help a provider organization better manage information across the board and demonstrate meaningful use for compliance. They were not designed from the ground up to help make clinical professionals more efficient and effective. That’s kind of a backwards way to do things. The EHR is really powerful and can do the work of 10 to 40 staff once the data is in the system but getting the data into the EHR is a challenge and the bane of clinical professionals’ existence.”

Most clinical professionals are unable to do concurrent documentation, and the inevitable delays cause inaccuracies. Flick elaborated, “The average time from session to actual note signing is 3.3 days, which is a lot of time. The clinical professionals finally get the note in and then there’s a review process and a quality assurance process. Some provider organizations told us that they have certain programs that are that are only at 50% utilization, because they’re spending the other 50% of their time on documentation!”

Client Profiles was designed in 2020 to better manage the affordability, poor work flows, and low adoption and usage rates many providers struggle with using traditional EHR. Download the most recent Client Profiles Alerts fact sheet to learn more.