The home health sector accounted for nearly a third of all health care job growth in August, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ most recent jobs report.
Since 2012, home health has contributed more than 93,000 new jobs to the U.S. economy, with 9,500 added in August. That represents more than 30% of the 32,700 total health care jobs reported for August.
Home health job creation is outpacing other health care sectors, including hospitals and skilled nursing facilities. In August, skilled nursing facilities added 3,400 jobs while hospitals gained 900.
Despite its contributions to job growth and similar trends expected in the years to come as the boomers age, the home health industry faces some headwinds.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has proposed rebasing the industry’s reimbursements by 14% in the next four years. If this proposed rule is finalized in its current form, the national average home health margin Medicare margin would drop to negative 9.77%, according to a trade group for the industry.
“The August jobs report underscores the value home health brings to the American healthcare system. Our community remains highly concerned that proposed cuts to Medicare home health will stifle job growth, while also limiting patient access to the home-based health services our nation’s seniors demand,” said Eric Berger, CEO of the Partnership for Quality Home Healthcare. “To ensure much-needed healthcare jobs and patient care are not at risk, we encourage CMS to conduct a more thorough multi-year analyses of the proposed rule and its impact on a healthcare sector that is poised to support job and economic growth.”
Written by Alyssa Gerace