Being a healthcare professional comes with significant stressors. Working long hours and performing potentially life-saving tasks can be physically, mentally, and emotionally taxing. Healthcare practitioners are often the unsung heroes of society.
So why have so many chosen a career in nursing and healthcare?
The simple answer is, the work is rewarding. Not only are you able to care for patients, but you’re able to build strong caring relationships with your patients and their families. However, since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, a career that’s already very challenging has become much harder for nurses and healthcare practitioners.
The impact of COVID-19 on healthcare workers
The pandemic has made an impact across the healthcare sector with most people reporting high levels of burnout or moral injury, which is the outcome of our inability to provide adequate support due to factors outside of our control. A staggering 47% reported experiencing PTSD.
Although jobs within nursing are essential, healthcare workers can feel undervalued. With increased workloads and minimal changes to pay, many feel the burden of “too much weight” on their shoulders at work. Studies have shown individuals who believe they’re underappreciated in the workplace are more likely to feel the strain of their workload, which often leads to exhaustion.
With so many in the field of nursing experiencing the effects of burnout, this can result in a lower standard of care for patients. Recent staff shortages have led to only 51% of clinicians believing that they’re assigned enough time per patient to provide adequate care. Alarmingly, patients receiving treatment in hospitals that have higher levels of staff burnout have an increased chance of mortality or a prolonged length of stay.
Is leaving the medical field the answer to reducing burnout?
Burnout has led to many healthcare practitioners considering a change in their career. With 32% of registered nurses stating that they’ve thought about leaving their current role, we could see a significant impact on patient care in subsequent years. Twenty-four percent of people who resigned in 2021, said that a lack of flexible work was a major deciding factor. This is why now, more than ever, allowing for flexible and part time jobs in healthcare is imperative.
With the introduction of restrictions during the pandemic, many workers saw drastic changes to their work environment. Many families had to navigate around home-schooling, and regardless of the industry, this was made possible through flexibility at work.
As restrictions eased, employees continued to experience flexibility with remote and hybrid options. This resulted in a dramatic culture shift and it is now commonplace for candidates to be searching for roles that offer flexible hours or part-time work. Previously considered somewhat of a luxury, flexibility at work is quickly becoming the norm with 40% of people now considering changing jobs to find something more flexible.
Full-time remote working options may not be possible for the majority of healthcare workers. However, offering flexible or reduced hours can help to alleviate the struggles of burnout and in turn, maintain a higher standard of patient care. Importantly, it could also be the answer to a sector in crisis.
Flexible and part-time opportunities in healthcare
The reasons why people may need flexible or part-time hours can vary and can include:
- Looking after a young family
- Caring for a friend or family member
- Maintaining a work-life balance
- Preparation for retirement or already retired
We understand that medical practitioners find real enjoyment and value in their work. This is why we believe you should be able to find a job that suits your needs, whilst continuing to pursue nursing as a career.
With jobs in nursing research, clinical research coordination, mobile research, and more, Seacole offers a range of opportunities.
Apply for your new role today.