We all know one of the 20,000 people requiring the care or support of one of Nebraska’s 482 skilled nursing facilities or assisted living communities.
They are our neighbors, colleagues, family, and friends. They are our teachers, farmers, truck drivers, clergy, construction workers, and first responders.
Today, there is a demand for approximately 2.3 million direct care workers in long-term care nationwide. By 2030, that number is estimated to increase to 3.4 million.
Nebraska’s seniors need you.
If you have an instinctive ability to put yourself in someone else’s shoes, a deep respect for heritage, and the integrity to show up for those who need you, there is a place for you as a skilled nursing facility or assisted living community worker.
Meeting long-term care residents’ needs takes a diverse team: dietary, maintenance, activities, nursing, social services, admissions, spiritual care, office management, transportation – there is a role for everyone.
Your future career in long-term care is waiting.
Looking to make an impact? Then you’re the perfect candidate for a career in senior living. Start your long-term care career today by browsing the NHCA Career Center.
Did you know?
80 of Nebraska’s 93 counties have at least one skilled nursing facility or assisted living community. These care settings are a hub of activity and major economic driver for their town.
Our state will need 1,056 more nursing assistants, 699 more LPNs, and 2,950 more RNs between 2018 and 2028 to meet Nebraskans’ care needs.
Show Your Support
Resources are available in the #WhoWillCareNE toolkit, including a flyer and social media graphics.
Sharing Your Story
Every day, more than 20,000 people receive care in one of Nebraska’s nearly 500 nursing homes and assisted living communities. These facilities are hubs of activity and health care for residents and their families; collectively employ 30,000 Nebraskans; and positively influence local economies.
Those who work in a nursing home or assisted living community have chosen the most selfless of professions. They come to work each day to nobly care for our most vulnerable citizens.
Carpenter said workforce recruitment and retention has been a persistent challenge, and the chronic Medicaid underfunding has left providers struggling to compete for qualified caregivers.
Then came the COVID-19 pandemic. Carpenter said the pandemic disrupted the labor market, so that now, current and potential staff are being recruited to the highest bidder.
Representatives from nursing homes recently told a legislative committee they were forced to boost starting wages for certified nursing assistants to $20 or $22 an hour, up from $12.50 an hour, yet still are unable to fill all the staff vacancies.
A year later and long-term care facilities are in the same boat. The Nebraska Health Care Association said half of the nursing homes and assisted-living facilities in Nebraska are in outbreak status.
“One positive they go into outbreak status which may mean isolation for residents, it means staff missing work, it means an influx in PPE usage,” said Jalene Carpenter, president and CEO of Nebraska Health Care Association. “We have a foundation that we’ve been trying to help support facilities with additional PPE, we ran out because there was just such a big need so quickly.”
“Nursing is a challenging profession. It is not easy,” said Kari Wade, the president of the Nebraska Nurses Association. “But it is incredibly rewarding. The difference nurses make is real.”
Nordquist said that the shortage of nurses and certified nursing assistants has run between 15% and 20% in some areas of the state in recent weeks. But, he said, some nurses are starting to return to full-time positions after working as “traveling” nurses during the height of the pandemic.
Share why long-term care is important to you. Contact the NHCA team at 402-435-3551 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Together, we can shape long-term care in Nebraska.