One component of President Trump’s proposed budget could have significant impact on urgent care staffing if it remains part of the final version ultimately approved by Congress. Specifically, Trump’s plan—which is likely to be substantially rewritten as it goes through the House and Senate—would ensure 6 weeks of paid leave for both mothers and fathers after the birth of a baby. Some large employers have already instituted similar policies voluntarily, but smaller companies (eg, many urgent care businesses) maintain leaner staffs, and requiring them to pay employees on leave and their temporary replacements could prove challenging. Urgent care may be affected more than other employers by virtue of the fact that medical assistants, whom are employed in vast numbers in our industry, are predominantly women of childbearing age. On the other hand, highly valued staff might find it easier to stay connected to their current employer if the stress of having to make ends meet while on maternity or paternity leave is removed. Of the 41 nations surveyed by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the United States is the only one without federally mandated paid parental leave. The 1993 Family and Medical Leave Act guarantees U.S. parents up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave from their jobs, but only 13% of private-sector workers have any paid leave.
Proposed Federal Budget Could Affect Urgent Care Staffing Costs