Friday, May 17, 2013
Health Care Field Adds More Jobs, Avoids a Downfall in Alaska
The health care industry in Alaska saw its collective payroll grow faster than any other job sector in the past decade, state analysts said early this month.
FAIRBANKS — The health care industry in Alaska saw its collective payroll grow faster than any other job sector in the past decade, state analysts said early this month.
Health care employers added jobs — 7,000 more between 2001 through 2010 — across good times and bad, according to a report from the research section at the Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development.
More than 4,000 people in the Interior work in health care, and they represent a combined annual payroll of almost $192 million, researchers wrote in this month’s Trends magazine.
“During the most recent recession, many of Alaska’s industries lost jobs or were stagnant, but health care continued to grow,” they said.
That trend, the section said, will likely continue as Alaska gets older. The state could see more than twice as many seniors — almost 125,000 — in 2034 than it hosts today. Researchers said that trend has big implications for an already-growing health care industry.
The single-biggest health care employer in the Interior is Banner Health — affiliated with Fairbanks Memorial Hospital — but the hospital only accounts for around one-third of the health care employees across the region, according to the report.
The second biggest industry-specific growth in the decade was felt in retail, which added 3,000 jobs statewide.
Contact staff writer Christopher Eshleman at 459-7582.