In this blog, we expand further on the healthcare sector and discuss developments this sector has seen over the last years. We’ll focus on environmental tax and skill shortage. The insights from this blog series come from our latest Healthcare Sector Report, in which you can find more in-depth information and useful advice regarding the healthcare sector.

In this blog, we’ll focus on environmental tax and skill shortage.

Environmental tax

The state of climate change and the adverse effects that aspects of modern life have on the environment have raised awareness and created a drive to reduce both emissions and consumption. Multiple sectors are working diligently to minimise, if not offset, the emissions they generate by providing funding for environmental-protection research, lower resource consumption, and paying environmental tax to assist the government in its goal to achieve net-zero carbon in 2050. 

The healthcare sector provides no direct contribution to pollution or non-sustainable processes other than the standard power and water consumption that comes from maintaining and treating a large number of patients in a large number of practices. For this reason, environmental taxes have little effect on how the healthcare sector is run. There may, however, be ways in which a changing environment could affect healthcare as a whole.

Adverse health effects may develop if work is not put into maintaining or offsetting the amount of pollution released into the atmosphere, as well as reducing the many other sources negatively impacting the environment. Heavy significance should be put on the correlation between a healthy environment helping to produce healthy people. Thus it is in the healthcare sector’s best interest to support sustainable practices, even if they may not directly provide any benefits. Putting extra attention towards resource usage or investing in more efficient treatment techniques can do that little bit to help the environment while slowly improving the interaction the healthcare sector has with the Earth.

Skill shortage

Due to various external factors, including the COVID-19 pandemic as well as a general trend within the sector, the healthcare industry is struggling with a shortage of workers. This is apparent when looking at the referral-to-treatment (RTT) times for the NHS in 2020. Following April, which was the effective start of the COVID-19 pandemic in the UK and Ireland, RTT times jumped by four weeks on average ( that’s a 50% increase). With the continued stress that the COVID-19 pandemic continues to put on the NHS, as well as standard practices, it is not unfounded that the sector is facing a skill shortage. 

With the impact of COVID and the effects Brexit will have on the healthcare workforce in the first part of 2021, organisations and companies need to be prepared for the skill shortages and formulate new strategies for improving their odds.

Recommendations

To combat the skill shortage, the healthcare industry needs to implement new factors to stimulate the workforce and produce an inflow of new workers.

Apprenticeship

Considering apprenticeships or increasing your number of apprenticeships is invaluable when considering how to improve the healthcare workforce. Apprenticeships allow for less experienced workers to gain the needed skills they require to enter the field. In addition, successful apprenticeships can attract past apprentices to the company following the completion of the program. Though apprenticeship programs can require quite a lot of investment, the workforce-payout can be well worth the time and effort.

Be aware of already skilled workers

Workers from outside of the healthcare sector can provide valuable resources and insight, even if their training is not explicitly for healthcare. Recognise that hiring skills from outside the sector can increase the size of the hiring pool.

There are a lot of other factors to stimulate the workforce. Read our full Healthcare Sector Report to learn more about how to combat the skill shortage.

Xeinadin supports businesses in the healthcare sector. Visit our healthcare page for more info and an overview of the services we offer, or contact us directly if you need advice from one of our local business advisors.

Do you want to read our full Healthcare Sector Report? You can download it for free!

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