After 3-Year Dip, Home Care Turnover Soars To 77%

Home Health Care News / By Andrew Donlan

The industry’s turnover rate was one of the biggest topics of conversation in home care in 2019.

And that was for good reason. The median rate had skyrocketed all the way to 81.6%, according to data collected by the research and education company HCP.

But since that point, it had significantly improved. From 2019 to 2021, the median turnover rate floated marginally from 64.3% to 65.2%. In 2022, however, it soared back to 77.1%, according to HCP’s 2023 benchmarking report.

“During COVID, we called them care heroes, we clapped, we celebrated – we did so well there,” Kristen Duell, chief marketing officer at HCP, told Home Health Care News. “Raising people up through all of that during those hard times. And now that those hard times have kind of passed, the recognition tends to slip. It just points to the need to stay focused and stay on recognizing and making sure employees feel valued through all of it, even when there’s not a pandemic.”

The 2022 data from HCP is taken from over 92,000 surveys with home-based care professionals.

In addition to recognition, training remains vital to reducing turnover.

“I think [training] is critical, that really should be at the core,” Jeff Knapp, chief people officer at Bayada Home Health Care, said last week during the HHCN Staffing Summit. “That’s simply a prime reason people leave, because they don’t feel like they’re able to access career development opportunities.”

The rise in turnover is obviously troublesome for the industry. In home-based care – where workforce shortages are significant – providers have seen retention as one of the only ways to mitigate staffing woes.

“Employee turnover in our industry has been high for years,” Amanda Sternklar, the director of marketing at HCP, told HHCN. “But it stayed relatively steady for the last couple of years. This year, with that jump to 77% turnover, that was obviously fairly surprising.”

One other factor contributing to higher turnover in home-based care generally could be the one-time sign-on bonuses that have been leveraged by home-based care providers over the last few years.

“There’s ample evidence that there are still a contingent of workers who are out there and really taking advantage of going from one sign-on bonus to another,” Amedisys Inc. (Nasdaq: AMED) Chief People Officer Adam Holton also said during the Staffing Summit.

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