Forecasting the trajectory of the healthcare job market is a popular New Year's exercise, and judging by the forecasts I've seen, conditions are looking pretty good for healthcare careers in 2014.
Here's the long view: The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects healthcare jobs to grow at a rate of 2.6% between 2012 and 2022. Less than 3% may not sound great, but over a decade, that adds up to 5 million jobs.
These numbers point to happy days, but how about some specifics? Is the industry starting to see these optimistic projection play out? As of now, there isn't a concrete answer. Landry Seedig, Senior VP and General Manager of the Allied Division of workforce solutions provider AMN Healthcare, notes that the end of 2013 left his organization with a murky view of the upcoming year.
"We thought that things would become a lot more clear as we approached the end of 2013, but unfortunately it has gotten a little bit more muddy," said Seedig in a phone interview. "There was the expectation of more patients coming in, and you can talk about [Healthcare.gov] and whatever else. The crystal ball hasn't gotten much clearer as we approach a new year in which a lot of this stuff kicks in."