The American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL), representing more than 14,000 nursing homes and long term care facilities across the country, announced the release of a recent survey of nursing home and assisted living providers across the U.S. The results from the survey showcase the urgent need to invest in the long term care workforce, specifically to help recruit and retain staff.
Key findings include:
- Ninety-four percent of nursing home providers said they have had a shortage of staff members in the last month. In assisted living communities, 81 percent said they had similar staffing shortages.
- More than half of nursing home and assisted living providers lost key members of their staff last year during the pandemic due to workers quitting, including among certified nursing assistants (CNAs) or direct caregivers and dietary staff.
- Close to 75 percent of nursing homes and nearly 60 percent of assisted living communities said their overall workforce situation has gotten worse since 2020.
- Eighty-one percent of nursing home providers and 75 percent of assisted living communities stated that higher reimbursement to offer better staff pay and benefits would help improve the facility's ability to recruit and retain staff members.
"The survey results clearly indicate that the long term care workforce is facing serious challenges, and our country must make significant investments to help address these shortfalls," stated Mark Parkinson, president and CEO of AHCA/NCAL. "Lawmakers across the country must prioritize long term care to ensure the profession has the necessary resources to maintain a strong workforce. This begins with addressing chronic underfunding of Medicaid for nursing homes, which currently only covers 70 to 80 percent of the cost of care. We have laid out proposals in our Care For Our Seniors Act that would enable our providers to address staffing shortages, but without help from Congress and state legislators, this will not be possible."
"We look forward to working with federal and state governments to ensure every facility has the ability to recruit and retain the necessary staff to ensure our residents receive the level of care they need and deserve. Caregivers are the backbone of nursing homes and assisted living communities, and we need to make sure they are being adequately supported so they can provide the highest quality care to our elderly population," concluded Parkinson.
A one-page executive summary of the results can be found HERE.