Tens of thousands of nurse anesthetists helped care for critically ill patients during the COVID-19 pandemic, making certified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs) among the top specialties that served Medicare patients in non-telehealth during the first few months of the pandemic, according to a report by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).
Even prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the demand for Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) was on the rise. And while there are roughly 49,000 people in the United States who are CRNAs in active practice today, the Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a 45% increase for trained CRNAs in the workforce by 2029. In recent years, the national unemployment rate for CRNAs has consistently been lower than 1%, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
As healthcare organizations continue to struggle with the challenges of an ongoing, highly publicized shortage of medical professionals, a lack of supply of CRNAs to meet increasing demands is top among the most critical. Without these skilled anesthetists, patients may face delays or cancellation for procedures, longer wait times for care are likely, and organizations may have experience the inability to capture additional revenue.
There are several macro dynamics that support an immediate and longer-term demand for CRNA talent.
Implications for Staff Planning & Modeling.
To help shore up supply gaps related to CRNA talent, leading healthcare organizations are utilizing on-demand staffing models to ensure more cost-efficient and continuous patient care delivery. Locum tenens CRNAs will play a valuable role in helping hospitals and other healthcare providers meet demand while controlling costs. In fact, a growing number of practitioners have purchased malpractice insurance policies for the purpose of working in temporary positions.
As a leader in locum tenens staffing, Cross Country Locums has partnered with organizations to enhance their staff planning and resources to meet the demands for CRNA talent. To learn more about the current state of the CRNA talent market, download our latest Market Snapshot: CRNAs.