Minnesota Hospital Association


January 05, 2022

UCare to support Minnesota Hospital Association Initiative strengthening and improving Minnesota's health care workforce

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn.– With a plan to impact the escalating health care workforce crisis, the Minnesota Hospital Association (MHA) is partnering with UCare. The organizations will use MHA’s continuous improvement model to develop a first of its kind roadmap and toolkit for health care workforce development.   

Health care workforce shortages have been of concern for many years, but the COVID-19 pandemic has elevated the issue to crisis levels as many health care workers have left or plan to leave the sector due to burnout, retirements, and resignations. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates a projected shortfall of 18 million health workers by 2030. Here in Minnesota, the Sahan Journal reports health care and social assistance industry employment is down more than 18,000 people since March 2020. Overall health care vacancies are even higher, with 40,000 jobs currently unfilled.   

MHA will receive support from UCare to develop a plan based on proven standardized best practices in health care workforce development, recruitment, and retention to change this trajectory for Minnesota health care organizations. The resulting roadmap will guide organizational efforts to support, strengthen, and improve the health care workforce. MHA and UCare anticipate that organizations will see higher levels of workforce satisfaction, improvement in diverse recruitment, and staff retention after implementing roadmap best practices.   

“It is imperative we explore all options for finding forward-looking solutions to the health care workforce challenge,” said Ghita Worcester, senior vice president of public affairs and chief marketing officer of UCare. “We are proud to join this initiative that will set a path towards building a workforce for the future.”   

MHA will lean on a group of leading industry experts that will help develop and pilot the roadmap. Workgroup representatives will bring diverse areas of expertise, such as human resources, chief nursing officers, operational leaders, CEOs, chief medical officers, staff development representatives, quality improvement staff, and others. The initial roadmap will be piloted in several hospitals and health systems throughout the state, including both metro and rural communities that are being impacted by workforce shortages.   

"The pandemic has significantly exacerbated the long-standing workforce problem for Minnesota's hospitals and health systems and turned it into a crisis,” said Dr. Rahul Koranne, president and CEO of the Minnesota Hospital Association. “This grant from UCare will enable us to expedite development of a roadmap to uncover, share, and spread best practices to build a strong pipeline of health care staff to care for generations well into our future.”

About UCare
UCare is an independent, nonprofit health plan providing health care and administrative services to more than 570,000 members throughout Minnesota and parts of western Wisconsin. UCare partners with health care providers, counties, and community organizations to create and deliver Medicare, Medicaid, and Individual & Family health plans. All its plans are National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) accredited.   

About MHA
The Minnesota Hospital Association (MHA) represents Minnesota’s hospitals and health systems, which employ more than 127,000 people, provide high-quality care for patients, and meet the needs of communities. Since 1917, MHA has worked to provide Minnesota’s hospitals and health systems with the resources, best practices, and guidance to provide an exceptional patient experience and high-quality, affordable care that extends beyond the hospital’s walls.