Sleep deprivation a serious issue for health care workers

A new survey on workers’ sleeping habits includes some startling results for the health care sector. Among the findings in the survey, which was conducted by CareerBuilder, were that 65 percent of health care workers say a shortage of sleep has affected their work, and 26 percent say they get 5 hours of sleep or less on average. Their work environment is feeding into the lack of sleep, with 53 percent of respondents saying that thinking about work keeps them up at night, and 68 percent having had work-related dreams. Forty-nine percent say they have found someone sleeping at work.

Clinician shortage at community health centers

One of the pillars of the health care safety net — the community health center — is threatened by a lack of primary care providers at a time when CHCs are serving more people than ever. A report from the National Association of Community Health Centers shows that CHCs have a higher physician vacancy rate (21 percent) than hospitals do (18 percent). The report, “Staffing the Safety Net: Building the Primary Care Workforce at America’s Health Centers,” shows that 95 percent of CHCs have a clinical vacancy of any kind, with family physicians (69 percent), nurse practitioners (50 percent) and medical assistants (48 percent) being needed the most.

New program integrates nursing and social work

The University of Southern California School of Social Work began accepting applications for an online master of science in nursing degree for family nurse practitioners. The new degree is designed to educate students on the biological, behavioral and social factors that influence health and well-being. "Evidence suggests 80 percent of health is influenced by social, psychological, environmental and behavioral factors, said Ellen Olshansky, newly appointed chair of the department of nursing at USC School of Social Work, in a news release. “We believe combining nursing and social work will prepare a new kind of nurse who can effectively integrate this knowledge into practice," Olshansky said