Anxiety and burnout: the Delta variant edition

September 1, 2021

It’s been nearly a year and a half since the COVID-19 pandemic began in America, and unfortunately, it’s not over yet. Although it seemed we’d finally be returning to normal, the rise of COVID cases due to the Delta variant implies that we’re not in the clear just yet.

In California, only 66 percent of individuals are fully vaccinated, and 10.3 percent have received at least one dose as of August 27th, according to statistics from California For All. As of August 27th, California has over 4.17 million confirmed cases of COVID-19, with roughly 28.3 new cases per 100K residents, according to the California Department of Public Health.

Although the vaccine has been available to the public since earlier this year, unvaccinated people still make up over 94 percent of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths in the US, according to a report from the Kaiser Family Foundation.

It’s no surprise that throughout the pandemic, healthcare workers have been put under immense pressure. Weekly COVID testing, long hours in full PPE gear, worrying for the health and safety of their loved ones, and shortages in staffing are just some of the factors that have led to many healthcare professionals feeling burnt out, stressed, and anxious.

At Recruitment Alley, we do our best to communicate with our healthcare staff and listen to their concerns about the work that they do in order to create a safer environment. We encourage our staff to take care of themselves both mentally and physically.

One of our Talent Agents, Nicole Rangel, worked as a CNA for the company during the second wave of COVID and experienced the pressure firsthand. Now, as a recruiter, she’s finding that these issues are what’s making healthcare professionals hesitant to go back to work.

“Everywhere is so understaffed. When CNAs are working, even though we’re paying them higher wages, they’re exhausted after just one shift,” said Nicole. “Management can be terrible at the facilities, so their internal staff gets fed up— and when we go in, we’re cleaning up that mess. People are like ‘I don’t care what you’re paying me, I’m still not gonna go back!’”

America’s alleged labor shortage may be a factor as to why professionals are opting to not work, collecting the pandemic unemployment assistance instead. According to data from ZipRecruiter, the average hourly pay for a CNA in California is $14, so it makes sense that some people would want to collect unemployment rather than work a stressful job.

“Lack of access to childcare or going to school while working are also some roadblocks that we see are preventing people from returning to the workforce,” said Saraya Smith, a Talent Agent at Recruitment Alley. “There are people that I’ve contacted who only want limited work, like not wanting long commutes or not wanting full-time because of those factors.”

Despite the challenges the healthcare industry is facing, Recruitment Alley is always looking to expand and find passionate healthcare professionals to join our team. We offer flexible scheduling so that employees can enjoy a work-life balance, competitive wages and benefits to ensure our staff is compensated for their hard work, and PPE gear to stay safe. We strive to provide 24/7 support for our healthcare staff so that they can pay it forward in the quality of care they provide to their patients.

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