SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — An aging population and an easing pandemic are creating shortages of healthcare workers, especially at-home programs.
As pandemic restrictions loosen, people are feeling more comfortable having at-home caregivers coming back in and providing services for their aging loved ones. However, that is creating a shortage of workers. Now, employers are getting creative to find enough employees.
“You can’t drive down the road without seeing a now hiring or help wanted sign,” said Chris Blaine, owner of Home Instead. “And, just like everyone else, we are trying to find workers.”
Blaine said the pandemic made people go to the hospital more instead of using at-home healthcare workers.
“I think we saw with the pandemic, the hospital is the new home,” said Blaine. “It is easier and more cost-effective in many cases and the health system is pushing people that way.”
Home Instead hosted a drive-through career fair to make things as easy as possible for people to find out more about working in healthcare. LaTara Winn is a new hire with Home Instead and says she is excited about starting.
“I have always wanted to do something like this,” said Winn. “Every since I was little I wanted to be a doctor. After seeing my grandmother and family members get sick, that is what made me really do this.”
Healthcare workers expect the need for their services to continue to increase as the population continues to grow and the pandemic eases.
“I think the statistic is we have about 10,000 people per day turning 65 and that’s for the next 20 years,” said Blaine.