Workers have been leaving the healthcare industry in droves over the past few years. Since February, 2020, hospital employment has decreased by nearly 94,000, including over 8,000 between August and September, 2021, alone. Another study predicted there will be a critical shortage of 3.2 million healthcare workers by 2026. Although the COVID-19 pandemic may have been the last straw for healthcare workers, long shifts, little time off, and hectic work environments were other driving forces behind the decision to quit.
The impact of COVID-19 altered the way behavioral healthcare operates and sets objectives. Many Americans were out of work, uninsured, and/or dealing with a new or existing behavioral health disorder, such as depression, anxiety, or substance abuse. The demand for mental health services did not match the resources available, causing those issues to worsen throughout the pandemic.