Depending on the lens you view it through, the most recent hospital jobs report is either impressive or unremarkable.
Hospitals added a seasonally adjusted 9,600 jobs in January compared to December 2014, reaching a total of 4.82 million, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). That's an overall increase of 56,200 total jobs compared to January 2014.
But if the seasonal adjustment is removed, January's net gain is reversed and becomes a loss of 9,300 jobs. However, the overall year-over-year gain jumps to 58,500 jobs, according to AHA News Now.
The overall trend is far more encouraging than a year or so ago. In 2013, hospitals added no new jobs at all. Many providers braced for the effects of the Affordable Care Act and had become quite conservative in their hiring.
The entire healthcare industry added 38,300 jobs in January and 342,100 jobs since January 2014, according to the BLS data.
Other healthcare sectors also fared quite well. Ambulatory care services posted the largest gain, adding 21,700 jobs in January, for a total of 6.78 million. But without seasonal adjustment, it becomes a loss of 25,500 jobs. However, that sector has added 231,600 jobs since the start of 2014, according to the BLS data.
Physician offices added 13,400 jobs in January, although that becomes a loss of 3,500 jobs once analysts factor in seasonal adjustments. However, that entire sector has added 71,800 jobs since January 2014, the BLS said.
Nursing and residential care facilities added 7,000 jobs in January, totaling 3.29 million. However, if those numbers are not seasonally adjusted, the gain becomes a loss of 18,400. But it has added 44,300 jobs since the start of 2014, according to the BLS.
Job forecasters appear bullish on the healthcare industry. It will likely generate as many as 5 million jobs by the end of the decade, with a greater emphasis on positions that handle data analytics expected in the coming years.