The Labor Department reported that nonfarm employment increased by a healthy 215,000 positions in March. Employment increased in the retail trade, construction, and health care sectors. Job losses occurred in manufacturing and mining. The change in payroll employment for January was revised from 172,000 to 168,000, and the change for February was revised from 242,000 to 245,000. With these revisions, employment gains in January and February combined were 1,000 less than previously reported. The median forecast in a Bloomberg survey called for a 205,000 job increase in March. For the private sector, March’s job gains marked the 73rd consecutive month of positive gains.
As America ages, the U.S. economy and its macro components—Social Security, Medicare, workforce, and taxation, to name a few—will be affected. Today federal spending on earned-benefit programs such as Social Security and Medicare accounts for nearly two-thirds of the total federal budget. These programs’ expenses crowd out discretionary spending for other high-priority societal needs, including education, infrastructure, and even defense spending.
Hospitals are making significant progress to reduce readmissions in an effort to improve quality and lower healthcare spending. Unfortunately there isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution to preventing hospital readmissions. There are many variables outside of hospitals’ direct control, such as social determinants and patient lifestyle factors, which can impact readmissions.