No one will ever forget the most severe recession in modern times in 2007. When 2010 came around, there were 8.6 million less jobs than at the beginning of the recession… and those numbers could have gone way higher if there weren’t growth in health care employment. It actually took until 2014 for non-health job numbers to get back to where they were before the recession.
So far, as of January 2017, there are about 2.5 million more jobs in health care than at the start of the 2007 recession, which is an increase of 19 percent in 9 years (which is pretty good given the population in the U.S. only grew by 7 percent). So far, jobs in healthcare have accounted for 35 percent of all the jobs added since the beginning of the recession. And that number will only grow in the next few years.
But some don’t believe this number and growth should be celebrated because the job growth was wasteful and didn’t produce a lot of improved health outcomes. Some believe we should have instead invested our saved resources in other ears like education food, shelter, infrastructure and retirement savings.
Many of these new jobs in health care were in ambulatory care settings, which include home health, freestanding clinics, dental offices, physician and other provider offices and labs. In hospitals, jobs grew by 11 percent, with 12 percent in nursing and residential care. Ambulatory care setting rose by 30 percent.From 2007 to 2013, health jobs grew at an average rate of 1.8 percent and then to 2.3 percent between 2013 and 2016. Now an aging population will place pressure on healthcare workforce. Growth in specific areas of health care will be determined in how care is provided to different populations in the future.
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