COVID-19 & the Health Workforce

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on the health care delivery system and its workforce. As cases surged across the country, many states responded with efforts aimed at building workforce surge capacity and developing new ways for patients to access services. Regulatory and policy changes aimed at expanding workforce capacity and supporting telehealth in service delivery were put in place by many states. These policy changes included expanding scope of practice for some health professions, relaxing state health professional licensing rules and supporting the provision of telehealth services. Federal guidelines for use of and reimbursement for telehealth services have also been modified to support broader use. In addition, many health care organizations and providers have developed strategies aimed at keeping their workers safe and supporting their well-being. This site is dedicated to providing planners and policy makers with up-to-date information on COVID-19 and the health workforce. Key areas of focus are:

Vaccine Information

Information about the effort to vaccinate the health workforce and best practices for health care providers to improve vaccination rates.

Access to Care

Information on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on access to health care services, including workforce shortages and surge capacity issues.

Changes to Organizational Policies and Guidelines

Information on workforce related policies and guidelines, including furloughs and redeployments, that have been implemented by health care organizations in response to COVID-19.


Information on the rapid expansion in use of telehealth in health care delivery. Topics include telehealth impacts on access to health care and telehealth-related changes to health workforce regulations, service requirements and funding.

Long-term Care

The elderly are at high risk for COVID-19 infection and death and often reside in long term care settings. Topics include information on the long-term care workforce in a variety of settings, including skilled nursing facilities, assisted living, and home health care where many elderly patients are served.

Health Workforce Safety and Resiliency

Information about pandemic risks to health care workers and the strategies being used to protect them from COVID-19 and support their well-being.

Health Professions Education

As a result of the pandemic, medical education and clinical experience opportunities were disrupted for many students. This topic provides information about the strategies used to assure timely progression in the health professions education pipeline during the pandemic.

Regulatory Flexibility

State and federal changes to rules and regulatory changes to promote more effective and efficient use of the health workforce.

State Workforce Strategies

State specific workforce strategies addressing COVID-19.

HWRC COVID-19 Resources

Each of the health workforce research centers (HWRCs) across the US are assisting in these efforts. These are specific resources developed by the HWRCs.

We will be continually updating this site to provide the most up-to-date information and policy changes as they unfold.

Have a COVID-19/health workforce related question? Email Us.