Healthcare jobs bounce back to pre-recession numbers

As many hospitals breathe a sigh a relief, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) on Friday released promising data that healthcare jobs are bouncing back to 2007 numbers, that is, before the recession hit, reports the Wall Street Journal blog.

The monthly employment report indicated the healthcare industry added 31,300 new jobs in July. Along with retail trade, manufacturing, and mining, healthcare jobs made some gains. During the past year, healthcare employment has grown by 299,000, reports the WSJ.

Hospitals specifically added 14,000 jobs during the month, while they experienced 2,000 job losses the previous month.

Ambulatory healthcare services also added 14,100 jobs in July with increases in physician offices (6,300 more jobs) and home healthcare services (3,100 more jobs). However, outpatient care centers saw a decrease of 500 jobs.

National unemployment in all industries changed little in July at a static 9.1 percent employment rate, that is, 13.9 million people, according to the BLS summary.

Some Republicans are blasting the unemployment numbers (and the Administration). "Today's unemployment report represents the 30th straight month that the jobless rate has been above 8 percent," former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, said in a Los Angeles Times article. "The administration promised with their $800-billion stimulus that they would keep unemployment below that number. When you see what this president has done to the economy in just three years, you know why America doesn't want to find out what he can do in eight."

The Administration recognized the numbers and called for joint action.

"While the better than expected report is welcome news, the unemployment rate remains unacceptably high and faster growth is needed to replace the jobs lost in the downturn," said Austan Goolsbee is Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, in a White House blog post. "Bipartisan action is needed to help the private sector and the economy grow--such as measures to extend both the payroll tax cut and unemployment insurance, as well as passing the pending free trade agreements with re-employment assistance for displaced workers, the patent reform bill, and a bipartisan infrastructure bill to help put Americans back to work."

For more information:
- read the BLS employment summary
- check out the BLS data chart
- here's the WSJ blog post
- read the LA Times article
- read the White House blog post

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