COVID-19 and the Health Workforce 4/13-4/27

4/13-4/27 Updates


Vaccine Administration

Nearly 20,000 nursing home workers have received medical exemptions from the federal health care worker vaccination mandate.

An FDA panel discussed plans for updating COVID-19 booster shots next fall.

Vaccine Administration

(04/22/22) Why Do Nearly 20K Nursing Home Workers Have Vaccine Medical Exemptions?
This article examines why 20,000 nursing home workers are seeking vaccine medical exemptions. Many of the nursing home workers with vaccine medical exemptions are in the same nursing home clusters. In Oklahoma, for example, 27 nursing home facilities have over 15 percent of the vaccine medical exemptions, a larger percentage than any other state.

(04/06/22) Advisers to FDA Weigh in on Updated COVID Boosters for the Fall
At a virtual meeting, a panel of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advisers, supported developing new COVID-19 vaccines to deal with possible future variants. The committee primarily discussed “the framework for making decisions about when to change the viral strain or strains used for future vaccines.” They will reconvene in May or June to consider more specific proposals for updating COVID vaccinations.

Health Workforce Shortages

A new survey finds nearly a quarter of clinicians are considering leaving primary care practice in the next 3 years, potentially exacerbating workforce shortages.

New research highlights the pandemic’s impact on burnout and turnover in the health workforce.

New research suggests a substantial decrease in the supply of registered nurses as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Nursing facilities continue to struggle to maintain adequate staffing.

Health Workforce Shortages

(04/19/22) Recent Survey Shows Primary Care Practices Are Overwhelmed, With 1 in 4 Clinicians Planning to Leave Within the Next 3 Years
A recent study from the L.A. Green Center and the Primary Care Collaborative finds that 25% of primary care clinicians plan to leave within 3 years. This study comes at a difficult time for primary care clinicians who are struggling to meet patient needs during the pandemic, dealing with clinician burnout, and facing delayed access to care. 46% of survey respondents feel that “primary care is crumbling” and 53% feel that their ability to overcome adversity and recover is limited, which increased from 29% in 2020.

(04/18/22) What’s Driving Turnover in Health Care During COVID-19?
In a recent video interview with HCPLive, Researcher Bianca Frogner from the University of Washington Center for Health Workforce Studies discussed findings from her team’s research including, turnover rates among long term care facility workers in 2021.


Telehealth use has changed throughout the pandemic, from both provider and patient perspectives.

As individual states continue to regulate telehealth use, a new report tracks state-by-state responses up to April of 2022.


(04/25/22) Inside the Big Variations in Telehealth Use Among Physicians
This article from the American Medical Association outlines the different ways telehealth has been used among physicians during the COVID-19 pandemic, with more than three-quarters of physicians reporting using telehealth and many suggesting they will seek to use telehealth further in the future.

(04/19/22) Mental Health vs Primary Care: How Americans Are Using Telehealth
This article from U.S. News & World Report highlights private insurance claims data to compare telehealth services offered in the context of primary care and mental health care. Social work has accounted for significant percentages of insurance claims involving telehealth, highlighting the growth and importance of mental health remote services during the COVID-19 pandemic.

(04/11/22) Executive Summary: Tracking Telehealth Changes State-by-State in Response to COVID-19 – April 2022
This summary from Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP provides an update on state-level developments in telehealth policy in the beginning of April 2022. Regulatory changes include some state-specific legislative action as well as changes to payment parity across the US.

Health Workforce Resilience

The health and well-being of health care providers continues to be a main issue in building resiliency in the health workforce during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Health Workforce Resilience

(04/22/22) Why Physician Well-being is a Two-way Street
A clinical psychologist spoke about warning signs for burnout among health professionals working through the COVID-19 pandemic in this article and video from the American Medical Association. The article outlines impact of burnout and strategies to address individual burnout among physicians.

(04/21/22) Healing the Wounded Healers
Physicians experience many barriers to getting needed care for mental health issues, with female physicians having significantly higher deaths from suicide compared to other professions. This article from Psychology Today examines issues like burnout and moral injury among health care workers, issues relevant in the current pandemic-era of health care.

(04/20/22) Medical Workers Tend to Push Through Their Mental Health Trauma. COVID-19 is Changing That
This article from Gothamist highlights the long-standing issues of mental health trauma among health care workers, and how the COVID-19 pandemic is leading to systemic changes in the way this trauma is addressed.