Healthcare jobs continue to climb

Healthcare gained 49,000 jobs in February, according to the latest numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Within the industry, hospital employment increased by 15,400 jobs, according to data released today. Ambulatory care services added 28,200 positions, including 9,500 in physician offices, 4,300 in outpatient care centers and 5,000 in home healthcare services. Nursing and residential care facilities saw a gain of 5,400 jobs last month.

That totals to 360,000 jobs over the past 12 months in healthcare employment.

Overall, employment rose by 227,000 across industries last month, while the unemployment rate remained unchanged at 8.3 percent.

BLS has predicted healthcare jobs will grow the fastest out of all industry sectors over the next decade. Healthcare support occupations will grow 34.5 percent, personal care and services occupations will increase 26.8 percent, and healthcare practitioners and technical occupations will rise 25.9 percent.

"With an aging population, continued increases in chronic disease driven by obesity and lifestyle, and the coming coverage expansion, we're going to need more of all types of health care workers," Chas Roades, chief research officer with The Advisory Board Company, said in The Hill's Healthwatch. "Wages are likely to rise in the sector as well, because the same aging trend will drive a growing shortage of clinical talent."

For more information:
- read the BLS press release
- check out the data
- read the Hill's Healthwatch blog post

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