This Month's News
20/20 vision? Workforce projections show health care careers in the lead
The health care workforce should continue to expand through 2020, according to new data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
The report, which tracks all sectors of the economy and the labor workforce, describes the health care and social assistance industry as "the most rapidly growing sector in terms of employment." It also notes the resilience of the health care field, which managed a 2.4 percent annual growth rate from 2006 to 2010, despite the nationwide economic slowdown.
In addition, the report notes, "employment is projected to grow rapidly, 20 percent or more, in six major occupation groups, with the fastest growth found in health care support occupations (34.5
percent), personal care and service occupations (26.8 percent), and health care practitioners and technical occupations (25.9 percent)."
Why the continued growth? A headline in a recent Business Week article sums it up: "Baby boomers are turning 65, and they will need lots of help." As one expert says, "The first baby boomer just turned 65 last year, so when it comes to health-care jobs, we haven't seen nothing yet."
In the short term, health care is showing strong growth as well, with the figures for January building upon 2011's "robust pace," notes a HealthLeaders Media article. In fact, one medical economist believes the health care field is "recession-proof."
Learn more about the BLS projections and what the future holds for the health care workforce at "Allied Health Professions and Associations: Transitioning Today While Preparing For Future Delivery Roles," a forum sponsored by the Health Professions Network, to be held March 9 in Portland, Ore.