FACES for the Future Coalition
California Hospital Association Allied Health Workforce Survey
The California Hospital Association releases its Allied Health Workforce Survey entitled “Critical Roles: California’s Allied Health Workforce” (February, 2011)
Who are the Allied Health Workforce? According to the CHA survey “the five largest non-nursing health care professions, based on FTE’s, are respiratory therapist, pharmacist, pharmacy technician, radiological technologist and CLS [Clinical Laboratory Scientist]. These five occupations accounted for roughly three-quarters of all FTEs reported (76%).”
The CHA report goes on to highlight what many of us engaged in the efforts of health workforce development already know: there is an impending critical impact that will be felt in CA hospitals if we do not prepare ourselves for workforce shortages. One of the primary factors affecting upcoming shortages is the aging of the current workforce with nearly 12.5% of the allied workforce eligible for retirement in the coming five years. The reality is that CA will need 1 million more allied health workers by 2030.
So what is to be done? The CHA outlines some strategies for improving the pipeline, allowing for more individuals to move through education programs and tracts for licensure and/or certification in greater numbers. Some suggestions include things such as better statewide funding for health science education, standardized health science coursework, and alleviating barriers to clinical training.
As FACES builds a sustained statewide Coalition of FACES pipeline programs for high school students, it is incumbent upon us to constantly innovate our model and best practices to address the real needs of the health workforce as a whole, and better align our work with those further up the pipeline so our FACES students are prepared to enter the full spectrum of health professions available to them.
To read more on the subject go to: www.calhospital.org/critical-roles.