Nurses Leaving Texas Nursing Homes for Better Pay at Fast Food Restaurants

Nurses and other medical staff are leaving their positions in Texas’ nursing homes because of low pay, advocates say, setting up the possibility for a nursing shortage in long-term care facilities as the state’s 65-and-over population booms in the next few years. The state’s low Medicaid reimbursement rate contributes to the low pay, a dynamic that’s driving nurses out of nursing homes or out of the health industry entirely, said Julie Sulik, vice president of Clinical Services for Southwest Long Term Management. “Sometimes they can go down to the drive-through window at McDonald’s or Wendy’s and make more money,” Sulik said. “Morale can be hurt when we have a hiring freeze or a wage freeze, because we can’t compete.”

Advocates warned lawmakers about the trend in a House Appropriations subcommittee hearing Wednesday. Scot Kibbe, director of government relations for the Texas Health Care Association, said Buc-ee’s convenience stores can pay some employees $14 an hour, and it’s hard for nursing homes to pay certified nursing assistants a wage comparable to that.

Source/more: Dallas Morning News


David Wingate is an elder law attorney at the Elder Law Office of David Wingate, LLC. The elder law office services clients with powers of attorneys, living wills, Wills, Trusts, Medicaid and asset protection. The Elder Law office has locations in Frederick and Montgomery Counties, Maryland.

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