Cory Minter: It’s Cory Minter. I’m president of Trinity Employment Specialist. Trinity is a staffing agency here in Tulsa and in Oklahoma City, and we specialize in doing staffing specifically for the medical field. We staff for both the hospitals and for medical clinics. One of the positions that we constantly have to recruit for are LPNs, it never stops. Right now in the Tulsa, Oklahoma City markets we are in a huge shortage of LPNs. The reason is because many years ago a lot of hospitals had just stopped using LPNs. They were going to focus more on having RNs only in their clinic because they were licensed to do more things.
Well, we had the Affordable Care Act come and completely take the medical field and dump it upside down. All of a sudden we are left with a huge shortage of LPNs. Here’s why. LPNs, like I said, were not being used by the hospitals nearly as much and so lot of the schools stopped promoting their LPN programs, and some of them discontinued them altogether. Now that the Affordable Care Act has come along, it has forced clinics to really penny-pinch
Our government, it seems like every quarter gives the medical communities or some specialty groups at least a 15 or 20% cut in what they will reimburse. Most of these medical clinics have a profit margin of roughly about 6 or 7% anyway, so they’re having to cut everything just to break even. One of the ways that the hospitals have now elected to do that is to come back to having LPNs in the clinic. They are licensed to do certain things so they have only a few RNs, and they’re having much more LPNs sitting in the clinics.
We have a huge shortage of them might now. We have a lot of different clinics that are always asking us to recruit for them. What we have to do is not rely on your typical ads. We have to go out and mine for them. We have to go find the specific LPNs, especially in the specialty groups, because most of the time when a custom bars comes to us they’re going to want us to find them someone who is specialized in their specific field. We are just not at liberty any longer to be able to rely on posting up an ad and getting someone in return. In fact that is probably the least successful way of recruiting any more. It’s just not the best avenue of going about it.
As a staffing agency I really want to encourage you to potentially consider looking at a staffing agency if you’re having trouble finding LPNs. I know that we work with the hospitals and the largest clinics in town, and they are all struggling with this, but yet Trinity is able to find individuals that are just that are sometimes very difficult to find, but we have to spend a lot of time doing it.
Most likely you and your human resources team are not going to have the time that it truly takes to be able to find some of the best talent in town. That’s what we really are good at. We would love to be able to help you out with that.
The compensation for an LPN is going up. I would say about five or six years ago the going rate for an LPN was roughly around $16 now, or sometimes even get to 18. Now you’re looking at around 17, 18 plus an hour, so that the salary has gone up a little bit. You have to be a little bit creative in trying to get some of the best LPNs to your practice.
One of the things that I would suggest to any of our medical clinics is really to focus on communicating your culture to each individual LPN, and paint a picture of what your culture is like. If your culture stinks and you know it, put a lot of effort into creating a different type of atmosphere. The medical community is really a small, small group in Tulsa and Oklahoma City. Everyone eventually will find out about what life is like in your clinic, and so you want to put a big huge emphasis on that.
It’s one of the best recruiting tools that you can do when hiring for LPNs. If we can help you out in any way in trying to hire for LPNs, would you please let us know? Please give us a call at 918-622-2588. Thank you so much. I hope you have a great day today.