Our healthcare system needs an abundant supply of well-trained caregivers - physicians, nurses, and allied health professionals - to deliver accessible, high quality, affordable care.


Workforce & Staffing



Workforce Competitiveness Trust Fund Funding RFP to be Released End of September

The Fiscal Year 2016 budget included a line item for the Workforce Competitiveness Trust Fund.  Working with the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development, Commonwealth Corporation plans to issue a request for proposals in late September.  In order to allow prospective applicants additional time to prepare for this round of funding we are issuing the following summary.





In 2010, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) issued a landmark report and evidence-based recommendations on the important role nursing will play in our nation's health care transformation.
To meet growing health care demands and challenges and to serve patients better, we need to change how nurses are educated, trained, and practice.
The Massachusetts Action Coalition is one of 51 coalitions working nationwide to advance nursing to meet current and future health care. Our goals are to:

  • Increase the percentage of Massachusetts nurses with baccalaureate and higher degrees who can manage increasingly complex patients and health system challenges in all practice settings
  • Strengthen education and training so nurses in Massachusetts can meet the growing needs of an aging and ethnically diverse patient population
  • Improve access to higher levels of nursing education by facilitating transfer of credits between degree programs and ensuring there is sufficient nursing faculty in our schools
  • Eliminate outdated regulatory barriers and organizational policies that limit nurses from practicing to the full extent of their education and training
  • Improve data collection and analysis to better understand nursing workforce supply and demand



CHANGING THE CONVERSATION:  Accelerating Workforce Trasformation in Healthcare

Hospitals and health systems need to accelerate workforce transformation so that they can be successful in making the wide-scale changes needed to redesign healthcare. To gain greater understanding of the realities of workforce needs and challenges over the next 3-5 years, the Massachusetts Hospital Association (MHA), funded by a Workforce Transformation Planning Grant, interviewed a diverse sample of leaders at Massachusetts healthcare organizations and conducted a
broad survey of its membership. A complex picture of emerging knowledge, science, and roles emerged, converging on the changing healthcare delivery system. Most of the 459,000 healthcare workers in Massachusetts 1 have been prepared for a model of care that has been hospital-centric. Yet, shifting sites of care, accountability for care management, a more patient-centered focus, and new skills in team care are driving the need for change.



Massachusetts Coalition Receives $300,000 to Advance Nurse Education and Build More Diverse Nursing Workforce

Massachusetts is one of nine states awarded a $300,000 grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) to create a more highly educated, diverse nursing workforce. This is the second RWJF grant, part of its national Academic Progression in Nursing (APIN) initiative, to support Massachusetts' efforts to make it easier for current and future nurses to advance their education to the BSN or higher degree.



AHA AONE ASHHRA Developing an Effective Health Care Workforce Planning Model White Paper - September 2013

The U.S. health care system faces growing challenges - the U.S. population is aging at a rapid rate; health care reform is expected to bring millions more patients into the system; and there are anticipated shortages in numbers of trained health care professionals to care for these patients. Therefore, the need to start now to develop more effective and efficient workforce planning models (WPMs) for health care organizations is critical.

This white paper contains both important data and insights as well as an assessment tool that will help organizations develop effective WPMs-and support excellent patient care and strengthen the U.S. health care system. By reading through this document in its entirety and completing the assessment in full, organizations can better define their needs as well as find new ways to improve their recruiting, sourcing, retention, retirement, and onboarding strategies, and use this information to refine their WPMs.



Through the Eyes of the Workforce:  Creating Joy, Meaning, and Safer Health Care

Workplace safety is inextricably linked to patient safety. Unless caregivers are given the protection, respect, and support they need, they are more likely to make errors, fail to follow safe practices, and not work well in teams.

A new report from the Lucian Leape Institute looks at the current state of health care as a workplace, highlights vulnerabilities common in health care organizations, discusses the costs of inaction, and outlines what a healthy and safe workplace would look like. The report concludes with seven recommendations for actions that organizations need to pursue to effect real change.





April 2013 - "Closing the Massachusetts Skills Gap:  Recommendations and Action Steps"-

This report serves as the final product of a project called Skills Gap:  Supply and Demand in the Massachusetts Economy," a joint venture of the New England Public Policy Center of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston and Commonwealth Corporation.  The collaboration has included a series of detailed profiles documenting labor market conditions in eight regions of the state, and eight regional convenings of business, education, workforce, and government leaders to discuss the data, share experiences and best practices, and consider action steps.  


How MHA, ONL and Their Partners Are Promoting a Strong Healthcare Workforce

MHA and ONL, in cooperation with many partners and collaborators, are leading the way to address the future nursing shortage in the Bay State.


Center to Champion Nursing in America (CCNA) Quarterly News Digest E-Newsletter

The e-newsletter examines important nursing issues through the consumer lens and features recent work and useful Web content.  The CCNA, a consumer-driven, national force for change, works to increase the nation's capacity to educate and retain nurses who are prepared and empowered to positively influence healthcare access, quality, and costs.



Facts about the Nursing Workforce

A new fact sheet from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation offers a wealth of hard data on the nursing workforce-how many nurses are at work today, what their educational backgrounds are, how diverse the nursing population is, what the employment trends are, how big the nursing gap will be in a few years, and more.


Our Workforce Needs

Our healthcare system needs an abundant supply of well-trained caregivers - physicians, nurses, and allied health professionals - to deliver accessible, high quality, affordable care. But forecasting our healthcare workforce needs and designing policies and programs to match those needs is challenging. Read More...


It Takes a Team: Who's Who on your Healthcare Provider Team

First and foremost, each patient has a nurse assigned to him or her at all times - 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This "primary nurse" works closely with your doctor to oversee and coordinate your care. Even when your nurse is on break, there is a nurse assigned to be responsible for your safe care. The nurse develops a plan for each of his or her patients and leads a team that helps with your care.