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Mar 11 -- The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), Department of Health and Human Services, invites public comment by May 10, 2022 on its proposal for a new Health Center Workforce Survey.

The Health Center Program, administered by the HRSA Bureau of Primary Health Care, supports the provision of community-based preventive and primary health care services to millions of medically underserved and vulnerable people. Health centers employ over 400,000 health care staff (i.e., physicians, medical, dental, mental and behavioral health, vision services, pharmacy, enabling services, quality improvement, and facility and non-clinical support staff.)

Provider and non-provider staff well-being is essential to recruiting and retaining staff, thus supporting access to quality health care and services through the Health Center Program. HRSA has created a nationwide Health Center Workforce Survey to identify and address challenges related to provider and staff well-being. The survey will be administered to all full-time and part-time health center staff in the fall of 2022 to identify conditions and circumstances that affect staff well-being at HRSA-funded health centers, including the scope and nature of workforce well-being, job satisfaction, and burnout. This information can inform efforts to improve workforce well-being and maintain high-quality patient care.

The Health Center Workforce Survey aims to collect and analyze data from no less than 85 percent of health center staff. HRSA will utilize stakeholder engagement strategies to support survey completion targets. The HRSA contractor will request email addresses for all health center staff from health center leadership. Using the email addresses provided, the contractor will administer the online survey to ensure data quality and respondent confidentiality. Participation in the Health Center Workforce Survey is voluntary for all health center staff. The contractor will analyze the responses and provide analytic reports. HRSA will disseminate the summary level data for public use, including preparing preliminary findings and analytic reports.

Health care workforce burnout has been a challenge even prior to COVID-19 and other recent public health crises. Clinicians and health care staff have reported experiencing alarming rates of burnout, characterized as a high degree of emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and a low sense of personal accomplishment at work.

Understanding the factors impacting workforce well-being and satisfaction, reducing burnout, and applying evidence-based technical assistance and other quality improvement strategies around workforce well-being is essential as the health center program health care workforce continues to respond to and recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and prepare for future health care delivery challenges.

Administration of the Health Center Workforce Survey will provide a comprehensive baseline assessment of health center workforce well-being and identify opportunities to improve workforce well-being and bolster technical assistance and other strategies. These efforts will further HRSA's goal of providing access to quality health care and supporting a robust primary care workforce.
HRSA Health Center Program: https://bphc.hrsa.gov/about/index.html
HRSA Health Center data and reporting: https://bphc.hrsa.gov/datareporting/index.html  
Health Center Workforce Survey draft documentation and survey forms: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/w4r18ar17wvp2j4/AABaKiTjhH13u8X_RxZNypSFa?dl=0
FR notice inviting comment: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2022-05077

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