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Healthcare Online Job Ads Dip in February

John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media, March 1, 2010

Online job ads in many employment sectors across the nation dipped by nearly 67,000 listings in February and healthcare practitioners and technical occupations accounted for almost half of the decline, a new report shows.

The Conference Board's Help Wanted Online Data Series report, which tracks more than 1,000 online job boards across the United States, found that advertised vacancies for highly skilled healthcare practitioners and technical occupations, such as registered nurses and radiographic technologists, fell by 30,300 listings in February, for a total of 537,000.

Demand for healthcare support personal, such as dental assistants and home healthcare aides, also fell by 8,600 listing for the month, for a total of 110,700, the report shows.

"Contributing to this month's decline were fewer advertised vacancies for physical and occupational therapist assistants, mirroring the declines in the demand for practitioners in these areas," the report stated.

Demand in the healthcare labor market varies substantially from the higher-paying practitioner and technical jobs to the lower-paying support occupations. In January, advertised vacancies for healthcare practitioners or technical occupations outnumbered the unemployed looking for work in this field by more than 3 to 1, and the average wage in these occupations is $32.64/hour.

The average wage for healthcare support occupations is $12.66/hour and there were more than two unemployed people looking for work in the field for every advertised vacancy, the report said.

The dip of 66,900 online listings to 3.9 million in all job sectors in February follows an increase of almost 750,000 listings in the previous three-month period.

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