Healthcare Now the Top U.S. Industry

When you think of the most profitable industries in North America, what comes to mind? You may be surprised to learn that healthcare has usurped all other job-creating industries in the United States and risen to the top of the list. The Atlantic reports that for the first time in history, “health care has surpassed manufacturing and retail, the most significant job engines of the 20th century, to become the largest source of jobs in the U.S.”Healthcare Now the Top U.S. Industry

While this revelation isn’t surprising considering baby boomers are aging; it is shocking to see manufacturing – the number one industry in North America since the industrial revolution – be overthrown. The Atlantic reports that this shift towards healthcare, although expected, has been quite swift: “In 2000, there were 7 million more workers in manufacturing than in health care. At the beginning of the Great Recession [in 2007], there were 2.4 million more workers in retail than health care. In 2017, health care surpassed both.”

Is Healthcare Recession-Proof?

There are three main reasons why healthcare – a trillion-dollar industry in America – has become the most profitable:

1. As a group, we are getting older.

A study by the National Institute on Aging concluded that the number of Americans aged 65 or older “increased tenfold in the last century.” The 2016 Canadian census also revealed that for the first time in census history, there are more seniors than children living in Canada.

2. Healthcare is recession-proof.

Even in times when many other industries are struggling, health care continues to rise. The Atlantic reports that “health care employment increased every month during the Great Recession” from 2007-2013.

3. Healthcare is resistant to destabilizing forces in the labor market.

Automation and globalization have been two of the biggest threats to the industrial market in North America since the World War II, however, healthcare has not been significantly affected by either. After all, care from your family doctor cannot be outsourced to another country, and a robot cannot perform solo surgeries on patients (not yet at least.)

What Does This Increase Mean for Patients?

More people employed in healthcare-related positions must equate to better care and health outcomes for patient’s right? Not exactly. According to The Atlantic, the majority of new jobs in healthcare are administrative – including managers, office clerks and receptionists – not clinical. Clinical positions, such as physicians and registered nurses, are actually experiencing a deficit.

An alarming study conducted by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) reveals that the US is currently facing a significant shortage of physicians, and it is only going to grow worse. “Estimates [suggest a shortage of] 34,600 to 88,000 doctors by 2025 and by 2030, the shortfall is expected to total anywhere from 40,800 to 104,900 doctors,” CBS News reports. There are also not enough nurses to meet the growing demands on the healthcare system.

An article published by NPR, also poses a heavy hitting question that must be asked: “Does the existing system too often focus on financial incentives over health or science?” According to Dr. Elisabeth Rosenthal, an author, medical journalist and former M.D., “we’ve trusted a lot of our health care to for-profit businesses and it’s their job, frankly, to make profit.” Her bestselling book, “An American Sickness: How Healthcare Became Big Business and How You Can Take It Back,” suggests points out that under our current healthcare system, it is far more lucrative to provide a lifetime of treatments than a cure.

What Does the Future Hold?

As the baby boomer generation continues to age, we are guaranteed to see a steady rise in the healthcare industry. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that over the next decade, five of the top 10 fastest growing careers will be in healthcare. In particular, personal-care aides and home-health aides are expected to be two of the fastest growing occupations, “projected to account for one in every 10 new jobs.”

The continued rise of employment is one of several positive prospects on the horizon for healthcare in the United StatesModern Medicine suggests that there are other “pockets of innovation” ahead, including:

  • A greater understanding of genomics leading to more personalized and cost-effective treatments
  • A growing emphasis on “whole person” care integrated with mental and physical health
  • Technology gains, such as patient monitoring and surgical procedures that lead to better outcomes and lower costs
  • The changing culture and training of providers that looks more to root causes and long-term outcomes

Modern medicine also suggests that to achieve positive change, members of the public must be active participants in healthcare reform, educating themselves and understanding that the “government in and of itself should not be considered the savior or the ultimate villain, but a key factor in the evolution from healthcare to health outcomes.”

What do you think about the status of healthcare in the U.S.? We’d like to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

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  • mustfa sharrif

    this author of this post is pharmacist in more than few state f the united states worked argest hospital in the world which is LOS NAGELES CAUNTY HOSPITAl well educted in pharmacy and medicine and law student 45 years familiar with federal court system even can do an appeaals, the second circuit of ny , ok that is said and done , mother in law 87 of age very well informead of her rights ;was a nurse in her olden days , has multiple stage diseases with cardiology plus many internal medicine . well spoken , sharp well spoken of her doctors , self sufficient live by her self and manages her own expenses she the patient and myself obtained any order form LIVANATA AGAINST LOURDES TO BE transferred to SUSQUHANNA REHAB NURSING HOSPITAL ( HOUSE OF HORROR ) T BE PROVEN STEP BY STEP in anarticuated Aand crItic of their methods of rehabbing any of the clieNt , with a RECOOENDATION THAT THEY ARE NOT TO BE TRUSTED IN THEUR ACTS OF STUIDTY ,
    2 they killed a patient on 4/8/2018 in the middle of the night with out call the paramedic of JHNSON CITY FOR HELP DUE TO THEIR IDES THAT you d need this and do nit that , due to the fact they are for profit $$$$$$$$ from r mediocre for keeping you and abuse you
    3 the flu season is here for many weeks now and the flu is very virulent means infectious
    4 if iu walk there yu do see any of the employee wear a face masks

    5 either they re immune to the flu and or they must be injected a heavy doses of the flu vacc\

    6- among verbal abuses when I was not present they verbally abuse months cheated her of her main protine of the mels or her plate did not arrive to the floor of the rehabn unit
    7- so I brought her a steak ffrom crcker barrel in Binghamton was taken away fromr hungry women for inspection like S eerian russin prison I Siberia , and te steak disappeared
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    8 I bought oodles of cholates from german choclates ALDI BRAND ) so be nice to my mom in law THEY TURNED TO VERBALY ABUSE

    9- SO IN SHORT SHE IS REDY TO E DISCHARGED A SHE CONTRACTED THE FLU BADLY

    THEY DID IT TOTEST and neiether give the T A M I F L U 75 mf which is 90 .00$ /capsule
    remember thatthey are for profits and they do t know how to make medicare pay for nothing
    10 the dummy doctor dr evans md and his phys asst indian cutie oie wlks on high heels
    to show her beauty and elegance in dressing and SHE HAD NOMANNERS
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    11 THAT WENT BY THEN ECOUNTERED THE FLU 4/12/2018 AND START THE NOSE BLEEDS and sniffles nd the cough and spitting and they had a bucket for sniffles vomiting

    11 the staff nurses they would not call the doctor on duty on the week end claiming she was
    diagnosed with the flu she will not being discharged 13 she went her doctor on wed 4 ’13 18 and git treated with heavy doses of antibiotic plus all kinds of inhlanat nd inhalations therapy
    so we awaiting day break to take to a LARGE HOSPITAL IN THE CAPITAL FOR INFECETIOUS DISEASE WHNE THE SUSQUHEQNNA GAVE MOUTH WASH ”’CEPCOL”” INSTED OF ANTIBIOTIC
    RECOMMENDTION FORTHE LOVE OFADAM AND HIS FATHER AND GOD SUN DO NOTTAKE YOUR PARENETS THERE TO DIE TAKE THEM SUNY SYRACUSE IT IS STATE SPONSORED
    MEDICL INSTIUTION

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