The results of the latest Advis survey of industry heavyweights is in: American healthcare is both striving and struggling to succeed in what everyone is hoping will prove a post-pandemic world. The stresses that pandemic has placed upon the system are unprecedented. The industry struggles with nursing shortages and inflation challenges, with Medicare reimbursement and the possibility of yet another wave of Covid, with project delays and a lack of capital. The results of the survey are attached below.
But the industry isn’t sitting on its hands. To address nursing shortages, hospitals are partnering with nursing schools. They’re increasing compensation and supplementing their workforce with agency labor.
In response to Covid, hospitals have instituted new infection control policies and redesigned Clinics to handle so-called ‘long haulers’ who experience lingering symptoms. But only a small percentage have signed up the Acute Care Hospital at Home Program, a program designed to expand a hospital’s reach when dealing with such patients. Most simply don’t see the program as applicable. Perhaps the program itself calls for reconsideration and a reboot.
The one enduring bright spot regarding the system’s response to Covid remains Telehealth. Not only is Telehealth here to stay, its popularity and application throughout the system has exploded. Almost 93% of respondents advise greater utilization of telehealth services.
Only 30% of respondents and their organizations are no longer seeking additional funding from government sources. The rest of the industry is seeking additional funding wherever they can find funds. Capital accounts are stretched to the limit as organizations seek funding for everything from facility expansion to more Covid supplies from sources like the Provider Relief Fund to FEMA.
In the aggregate, this industry snapshot reveals both peril and promise. The promise is to fulfill their mission as healthcare providers come what may. The peril is in maintaining flagging energies and staff and capital accounts to meet what amounts to an unprecedented challenge amidst increasing perilous times. The path forward remains uncertain, but forward American healthcare goes. Forward American healthcare must go.
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