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Archive for April, 2010|Monthly archive page

HEALTHCARE REFORM – THE PERFECT STORM

In Executive Leadership, Human Capital Trends, Published articles or white papers on April 22, 2010 at 3:38 pm

Published May 2010, The National Healthcare Reform Magazine

Just as our country has endured an unprecedented economic crisis in the past 24 months, the United States will soon be in an unprecedented healthcare HUMAN CAPITAL crisis that will catch many off guard, just as the economic crisis of 2008 did for so many. There are several factors for this with Healthcare reform setting the stage for the “perfect storm” as the first of the “baby boomers” turns 65 in 2011. Just as government run Fannie and Freddie Mac helped fuel the economic crisis of 2008 – the current environment is ripe for a healthcare human capital crisis. It is no question that reform in healthcare is needed. What type of reform is the ultimate question. In their book, Redefining Health Care, the authors point out the following; “Health care is on a collision course with patient needs and economic reality. In today’s dysfunctional health care competition, players strive not to create value for patients but to capture more revenue, shift costs, and restrict services. To reform health care, we must reform the nature of competition itself.”
The Institute of Medicine in their 2008 report Retooling for an Aging America is clearly leads the way when it comes to understanding the significant impact of the aging population which has not been seen before in our history. Here are the facts from the IOM report 2008.
1. Between now and 2030 the number of adults aged 65 or over will double. This dramatic shift will place unseen and accelerating demands on the US healthcare system. The sheer number of older patients will overwhelm the number of physicians and other healthcare professionals unless something is done.
2. Beginning in 2011 – the 1st wave of the baby boom generation will begin to turn 65 – the 78 million baby boomers will tip the population scale growing from 12 to 20% by 2030.
3. Older Americans will consume much more healthcare and this is not built into the $900B Healthcare reform estimate. The current 12% of older Americans currently accounts for 26% of all physician visits – by growing to 20% – older Americans will account for more than 50% of healthcare utilization just as these reforms start to take affect.
The recommendations laid out by the IOM are essential in healthcare reform – but have not been addressed in the current healthcare model. Other demographic factors are at play, such as, the aging healthcare workforce. Leaders in healthcare human capital retention understand that we are in the “eye of the storm” with a false sense of security with the impending wave of baby boomers, the backlog of new grads, and the eventual retirement of veteran nurses. This is especially true in the competition for quality licensed healthcare professionals who drive the revenue and deliver the highest quality in patient care. The reality is that the demand for healthcare is going up and the supply of available licensed professionals is going down. This demand cycle will be good for professionals who will see significant growth in salaries and perks, but it will be a challenge for healthcare organizations wanting to attract and retain their people with the aging population and workforce – added with the new demands of Healthcare reform.
The “true cost” of the current healthcare reform can not be calculated – needless to say it will be a number that makes the Wall Street bailout seem insignificant. Healthcare reform is certainly needed – we are on a “collision course” with both the demographic and economic reality. The type and degree of reform needs to have all healthcare leaders involved in the debate as reform is being constructed like a makeshift life boat as the storm clouds appear on the horizon.

As seen in The National Healthcare Reform Magazine http://www.healthcarereformmagazine.com/article/perfect-storm-looming-healthcare.html May 2010

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Nurses Salaries and Employment will “boom” with the Baby Boomers

In Executive Leadership, Healthcare, Human Capital Trends on April 16, 2010 at 3:23 pm

The March 8, 2010 Edition of Advance for Nurses has as interesting editorial by Adrienne O’Brien in which she lays out several key factors in nurse employment, including the economy and nurses who have put off retirement. Adrienne brings up several key points that indicate we are in the “eye of the storm” with a false sense of security with the impending wave of Baby Boomers, the backlog of new grads, and the eventual retirement of veteran nurses. There is a tremendous chasm in the age of veteran nurses and the future nurse leaders – all one has to do is attend a nurse leadership conference to see this 1st hand.
This reality will become evident as the 1st Baby Boomer turns 65 in 2011 and the tsunami effect of the Baby Boom generation overwhelms the current healthcare workforce. Look for the BOOM in salaries and employment to coincide with the Baby BOOMERS!
For more info on the subject I recommend the book Retooling for an Aging America written by the IOM.

Notes from the 43rd Annual AONE Meeting and Expo

In Executive Leadership, Healthcare, Human Capital Trends on April 12, 2010 at 2:20 pm

The American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE) conducted their 43rd annual meeting and expo April 9-12 in Indianapolis. There were many timely topics covered, including healthcare reform and the leadership challenges that it will present. Without question, every Nurse Leader understands there is a looming crisis in regards to the shortage of healthcare professionals. The Nurse Staffing & Quality Care session unveiled new research supported by an education grant from CareFusion that showed positive patient outcomes are affected by the quality and quantity of nurse staff. Another heavily attended session was entitled Positioning Yourself for Success: Advancing Your Career in Exciting Times. This session looked at critical leadership attributes and skills needed for moving into executive level positions.