The Great Resignation is shaking the healthcare industry. 

The numbers are in – according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the nursing home sector has lost nearly 229,000 caregivers or roughly 15% of its workforce since February 2020. Many of these caregivers cited burnout as their primary reason for exiting the profession. This makes the nursing home sector the hardest hit by the great resignation, but what are the ripple effects? 

We’ve spoken with Gale Healthcare’s Chief Nursing Officer, Eric Dorsey, who has spent his entire career in the long-term care industry. Learn more about what he highlights as three major impacts of turnover on nursing facilities, as well as potential solutions for preventing these setbacks.

Financial Impact

High turnover is a revenue-depleter. A 2017 study conducted by HR Dive revealed the price of replacing an employee can be as high as 33% of that employee’s salary! To put that into perspective, if you’re looking to replace a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) that earns $50K per year, you’re looking at a price tag of about $16K, including recruiting costs. And that’s just one LPN. With the national turnover rate of LPNs at about 34%, the cost of replacing multiple LPNs can take a sizable bite from your staffing budget.

When you’re at risk of losing members of your nursing staff, it’s always better to attempt to address their concerns before they resign. Avoiding turnover costs can help you save for other important resources your facility desperately needs.

Cultural Impact

The impact high turnover has on organizational culture cannot be overstated. Your facility’s turnover rate directly impacts morale. As mentioned earlier, many nurses are leaving the profession due to burnout, which has been exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic. Spiraling turnover overburdens your remaining nurses, which in turn will impact the level of care they’re able to provide. Along with the erosion of morale, high turnover also diminishes your facility’s reputation. This can make high-quality clinicians less likely to apply to your facility. It could even render your facility undesirable to future residents.

The next time a member of your staff approaches you with a concern, take the opportunity to talk it through with them.  Finding ways to keep them will likely be more advantageous to your staff, as well as to patients and residents who know them and are accustomed to their care.

Impact on Care 

This is the greatest impact of all. Facility managers have a duty to their patients to ensure proper care –  and doing so requires a sufficiently staffed facility. Data analysis published in a 2021 Health Affairs article revealed high turnover leads to rehospitalizations and increased use of physical restraints. Another study goes a step further, suggesting understaffing causes near misses due to safety workarounds and cognitive failures. 

No facility manager wants a patient to sustain an injury on their watch. When staffing levels get low, it’s crucial to have a plan of action in place to fill vacancies as soon as possible.

About Eric Dorsey

Eric Dorsey is the Chief Nursing Officer at Gale Healthcare Solutions. Dorsey began his nursing career as a nursing assistant, providing care while pursuing his nursing license. He then became a long-term care nurse, before later serving as a Director of Nursing, Regional Nurse Manager, and Nurse Practice Educator. Eric’s clinical background and diverse experiences in long-term care provide strong insights into the daily challenges facing patients, nursing staff, and nursing care facilities.

Use Gale as your Turnover Solution

Are you currently facing a shortage of healthcare staff? Gale Healthcare is an industry leader in providing staffing solutions for healthcare facilities. We empower facility managers by making it easy for our W-2 nursing staff to fill open shifts. Whether a per diem or travel assignment, Gale’s got you covered! Gale can even help you secure permanent staff if needed. 

Our goal is to provide you with a complete staffing solution, tailored to your specific need. We also offer 24/7 support to address your questions or concerns and enable you to focus on what you do best.

Our mission is to make sure that no patient goes without care. To learn more about Gale’s innovative solution to healthcare staffing, contact us here. We’ll help you address your staffing concerns in no time!