At the beginning of 2022, it rose to 0.6. According to THL’s data, 89 percent of the units had reached this level by May. In previous monitoring results, as of November 2021, 71 percent of units had achieved 0.6 nurses per client.
“The increase in the number of nurses per client has been achieved by recruiting 900 care assistants to 24-hour care units and by increasing the share of direct nursing work performed by existing nurses and nursing assistants. The actual number of nurses and nursing assistants did not increase at all during the year,” says the chief expert. Sari Kehusmaa from THL.
In May 2022, there were an average of 51,000 elderly people in 24-hour care. The figures show that the number of customers has remained at the previous year’s level.
Additional time is needed to raise the care ratio
According to THL, attempts to recruit thousands of additional employees for round-the-clock care and home care will not succeed. The agencies reported last May that recruitment of 3,500 permanent social and health professionals over the past six months had failed due to a lack of trained workers. The number of unsuccessful recruitments increased by more than 1,000 during that period.
“Based on our monitoring work, it can be concluded that more time is needed to raise the proportion to 0.7, because the recruitment of nurses and especially family caregivers has not been successful. At least one additional year must be reserved so that caregivers can be improved, for example by offering additional study places,” Kehusmaa adds.
However, a greater impact than the increase in the number of statutory caregivers is the rapidly growing number of elderly people in Finland. Elderly services are used the most by people aged 80 and over, 10% of whom are currently in 24-hour care and 23% in regular home care services. The number of people over 80 is expected to increase by 116,000 by 2030.
“Based on the population structure and the predicted increase in the number of clients, several thousand more caregivers will be needed in the next few years, both in 24-hour care and in home care,” states the leading researcher. Hanna Alastalo from THL.
Source: The Nordic Page