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Sixty-seven percent of U.S. healthcare providers, including hospitals, have problems attracting experienced IT employees, according to the Towers Watson survey, “Closing the IT Talent Gap in Health Care.” Additionally, 38 percent reported retention issues.
The problem escalates for Epic-certified professionals, with 73 percent of respondents reporting difficulty hiring these individuals to help gain compliance with new electronic medical record requirements.
“Hospitals have an urgent need for experienced, highly skilled IT professionals to ensure they can meet new government requirements and qualify for financial incentives,” said Heidi Toppel, a senior rewards consultant in Towers Watson’s hospital industry group.
The survey found 55 percent of respondents are taking at least three measures to address their attraction and retention issues with IT professionals. Commonly reported effective tactics include increasing base pay rates, offering retention bonuses, and providing additional education and training.
The survey was conducted in February and 102 U.S. healthcare provider organizations participated. Fifty-two percent of the respondents are hospital systems and 67 percent have 5,000 or more employees.