Trendlines: Perspectives on Utah's Economy, Nov/Dec 2009


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November-December 2009 Issue of Trendlines Magazine published by the Utah Department of Workforce Services. For more information, please visit

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Trendlines: Perspectives on Utah's Economy, Nov/Dec 2009

  1. 1. November/December 2009 Perspectives on Utah’s Economy healthcare in utah Health Spending—an Ever Larger Slice of the Pie Economic News pg. 8 Healthcare Jobs with the Best Employment Outlook Economic Insight pg. 10 Department of Workforce Services
  2. 2. Trendlines Trendlines Utah Department of Workforce Services is published every other month by the Utah Department of Workforce Services, Executive Director Workforce Development and Information Kristen Cox Division. To read, download, or print this publication (free), see our Internet Workforce Development and Information site: Click on Stephen Maas, Director “Publications” then select the one you want Stacey Joos, Assistant Director from the list. Kimberley Bartel, Editor To obtain additional printed copies or to Contributors subscribe to Trendlines contact: Mark Knold Department of Workforce Services John Mathews Attn: WDID John Krantz 140 East 300 South Jim Robson Salt Lake City, UT 84111 Lecia Langston Linda Marling Church Kimberley Bartel Telephone: (801) 526-9462 Cheryl S. Smith Fax: (801) 526-9238 Email: Coordination Connie Blaine The Workforce Development and Designer Information Division generates accurate, Pat Swenson timely, and understandable data and analyses to provide knowledge of ever- changing workforce environments that support sound planning and decision-making. DWS-03-44-0909 Equal Opportunity Employer/Program Auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to individuals with disabilities by calling (801) 526-9240. Individuals with speech and/or hearing impairments may call the Relay Utah by dialing 711. Spanish Relay Utah: 1-888-346-3162. 2 November/December 2009
  3. 3. Perspectives on Utah’s Economy November/December 2009 contents We're Getting Close 5 Wasatch Front and Statewide re healthcautah in Using Local Employment Dynamics Data to Better Understand the 6 Health Spending—an Ever Larger Slice of the Pie Healthcare Industry Economic News pg. 8 Healthcare Jobs with the Best Employment Outlook Economic Insight pg. 10 The Outlook Health Spending—an Ever Larger 8 Slice of the Pie Department of Workforce Services Economic News Which Healthcare Occupations Have 10 the Best Employment Outlook? Economic Insight Healthcare Is the Recession Easing Up? 12 in Utah National News What is Healthcare? The Industry 14 What's Happening pg. 6 There's a New Education & Career 17 Planning System in Town: Insider News Pharmacist: On Duty 18 Occupations Utah Health Exchange 20 Our Guest Iron County 21 County Highlight Netting a Job on the Internet 22 DWS News pg. 24 Hospital Wages: A Rural/Urban 24 Comparison The Outskirts Just the Facts... 27 Rate Update Trendlines 3
  4. 4. wasatch front and statewide | by mark knold, chief economist 4 November/December 2009
  5. 5. We're Getting Close It will be a while before the nation’s (and Utah’s) production capacity and labor force are pushed back to a level where additional workers, en masse, are needed to raise the nation’s output. A Did You Know... lthough employment numbers Still, job gains in a recession-busting are still falling, there are indica- quantity are also not just around tions arising to suggest that the the corner. IHC Global Insights, a Utah employment slide is close to find- Massachusetts-based economic think • Construction crews began ing its bottom. One factor is that num- tank and consulting firm, estimates heavy work to build the six- bers cannot move down at an acceler- that the United States is only using 65 mile light-rail track that will ating rate indefinitely. They eventually percent of its production capacity. If connect downtown to the Salt reach a point where a downward run so, that is an historic low in the post Lake City International Airport. loses its negative momentum. Some- World War II environment. That means times the momentum breaker is an there is plenty of room for the nation article/705327416/Work-begins- improvement in the economy itself, as to kick its production into a higher on-airport-TRAX-line.html job hiring picks up. Other times, as is gear without a corresponding need to probably the current case, the improve- kick up its number of new workers. ment comes with time and simple • Utah is using state money mathematics. There is much evidence that the nation’s and federal stimulus funds to existing workforce is not utilized to its leverage long-term research The year-over percentage of job growth full potential. Extensive furloughs and projects with a commercial (or loss) is calculated by comparing full-time workers working less than full- potential. http://www.sltrib. the most recent employment number time hours suggest the economy needs com/news/ci_13286420 to that of one year ago. As we move to fully use those who are currently forward in time, the year-prior employed more than it needs to add • University of Utah researchers reference date will begin to capture more workers to the nation’s payrolls. have secured more than $7 the steep employment losses of the million in federal money recession. Consequently, while Utah is This is also true for the Utah economy. to explore ways to make still experiencing job losses, those job It will be a while before the nation’s geothermal wells more losses will be fewer in comparison to (and Utah’s) production capacity and productive. http://www.sltrib. those experienced during the height labor force are pushed back to a level com/business/ci_13293581 of the recession. Therefore, the rate where additional workers, en masse, of employment decline will begin to are needed to raise the nation’s moderate. output. Trendlines 5
  6. 6. the outlook | by lecia parks langston, economist Using Local Employment Dynamics Data to Better Understand the Healthcare Industry A s a data geek, I love to wax rhapsodic about Local share of teenagers working in the healthcare/social services Employment Dynamics (LED) data. This melding of sector. However, perhaps the most striking characteristic of statistics by the U.S. Census Bureau provides industry- the data occurs in the gender breakdown. Statewide, men level demographic information never before available for account for 54 percent of total employment. However, in data-geek consumption. This LED data reveals important the healthcare/social services industries, men account for a insights about Utah’s recession-resistant healthcare/social minor 28 percent share. Yes, women heavily dominate this services industry. industry’s employment. Before we get started, let’s talk about the inevitable “caveats.” Typically, Department of Workforce Services Wage Gap healthcare/social service data includes only privately-owned In addition, the difference between male and female wages establishments. However, for the purposes of this article, is huge. For men, the average monthly wage measures we’ll be looking at the characteristics of all healthcare/ almost $5,300. Women post an average monthly wage of social services industry jobs—both private and public. just more than $2,400. In other words, on average women Except. . .federal data is excluded. The Census Bureau has make 45 percent of men’s wages in the healthcare/social yet to obtain the pertinent information it needs from the services industry. The comparable statewide figure measures federal government (go figure). Employment numbers are 56 percent. Part of the difference in wages may be due to the 2008 averages. Other figures represent the most recent four fact that women typically work fewer hours than do men. quarters ending with the third quarter of 2008. All figures However, most of the gap undoubtedly reflects the clustering represent the most current data available. of women in lower-paid occupations and the clustering of men in higher-paid occupations. In general, healthcare/ War of the Sexes social services workers make slightly less than workers in all industries combined. The age distribution of the healthcare/social services industry tracks very closely with the overall age structure in the labor To learn more about the healthcare/social services industry: market. The main difference appears in the slightly smaller 72% Utah Healthcare/Social Services Industry Characteristics 2008 54% Source: U.S. Census Bureau; Local Employment Dynamics. 46% All Industries Healthcare/Social Services 28% 27% 28% GENDER Percent of Industry Total 20% 19% 16% AGE 11% 12% 5% 3% 2% Female Male 14-18 19-24 25-34 35-44 45-54 55-64 65-99 6 November/December 2009
  7. 7. • Workers in ambulatory healthcare services (doctors/ dentists offices, clinics, etc.) show the highest average wages, while hospitals display the highest new-hire wages. • Ambulatory healthcare services Utah Healthcare/Social Services created the most Industry Employment new jobs and generated the most Four-Quarter Average ending Third Quarter 2008 new 2008 hires of any healthcare/social services subsector. This subsector also showed Nursing/Residential Ambulatory Healthcare the largest total Care Facilities employment. Social Assistance Hospitals • Nursing/ Total residential care Employment facilities showed the highest turnover rate while Average hospitals showed the Quarter New Average Average Average lowest turnover. Hires Monthly New Hire Quarter Job Earnings Creation Earnings 15,549 3,101 899 $3,760 $2,127 $2,096 1,222 $1,529 $1,276 46,997 35,473 20,651 5,904 2,398 5,145 $2,071 2,155 452 $3,484 $2,269 Source: U.S. Census Bureau; Local Employment Dynamics. Trendlines 7
  8. 8. economic news | by jim robson, economist Health Spending— an Ever Larger Slice of the Pie I ndividually and collectively by New treatments also increase costs Another important source of medi- businesses and government, an as they are rapidly adopted by an cal spending growth is the aging of ever-increasing proportion of expanding number of patients. Of the population. As one ages, the de- our total consumption goes toward course, some technological advances mand for medical intervention in- healthcare. The most widely used do reduce spending, but overall, creases. With the post World War II measure for the total dollar value of medical technology and clinical baby boom generation moving into all goods and services produced in practices have overwhelmingly in- their senior years, the demand for the U.S. economy is Gross Domestic creased costs. medical treatments and services will Product (GDP). In 1960 healthcare increase significantly. accounted for 5.2 percent of GDP. Over time, as our wealth increases, The proportion of national produc- people naturally allocate more of Another way to look at the increase tion going to healthcare has steadily their spending to healthcare. The in healthcare spending is to compare increased over almost 50 years to demand for medical care tends to overall consumer price inflation to reach an estimated 16.6 percent of rise as real (inflation adjusted) fam- medical price inflation (as measured GDP in 2008. ily income increases. This result by the consumer price index). From manifests itself in the increased use 1960 to 2008, medical inflation has Analysts who have studied the un- of insurance coverage in recent de- been 2.24 times the overall increase derlying causes of this dramatic cades and the greater demand by in consumer prices. growth in healthcare spending in consumers for healthcare goods and recent decades cite the following services to improve the quality and It is interesting to note that the reasons: New medical technologies longevity of their lives. United States is the only modern and services are constantly emerg- industrialized country that does not ing and becoming widely used. The With the growth of insurance cover- provide some kind of healthcare major advances in medical science age, as evidenced by a substantial re- coverage for all its citizens. Yet in allow practitioners to diagnose and duction in out-of-pocket healthcare 2007, out of the 30 most industrial- treat illnesses in ways that were not spending, more medical services are ized countries, the U.S. spent 16 per- previously possible. Many health- used than would otherwise be de- cent of its GDP on healthcare, while care innovations require costly manded if the costs were more di- no other country spent more than new drugs, equipment and skills. rectly borne by the consumer. 11 percent. 8 November/December 2009
  9. 9. U.S. Health Spending as a share of Gross Domestic Product (for selected years) 20% 15% As our wealth increases, we 10% usually divvy out more of our spending on 5% healthcare. 0% 1960 1970 1980 1990 2000 2005 2006 2007P* 2008P* P* = projections Source: Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), Office of the Acturary. Percent Change in U.S. Consumer Prices by Decade 140% Medical 121% 120% inflation has 98% 112% 100% been over two Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. times the overall 80% 71% 68% increase in 60% 48% 45% consumer prices. 40% 26% 34% 29% 20% 0% 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000-08 All Consumer Prices Medical Care Trendlines 9
  10. 10. economic insight | by lecia parks langston, economist Which Healthcare Occupations Have the Best Employment Outlook? Untangling the Projections Data T he recent economic downturn cess? It’s registered nurses. In other words, don’t be proves one very important point. deceived by a high growth rate. In small occupations, While the healthcare industry may rapid growth may still result in few job openings. not be recession-proof, it is certainly re- cession-resistant. It is the one major in- In Utah, the registered nurse occupation is projected dustry in Utah that continues to create to produce (by far) the highest number of openings additional job opportunities despite between 2006 and 2016. The next four occupations recession. Moreover, healthcare oc- with large numbers of openings (nursing aides/or- cupations will continue to provide derlies, home health aides, medical assistants, dental some of the best employment op- assistants) fall in the “healthcare support” category. portunities in the years ahead. These occupations are the least skilled of the total But, how do you sort through healthcare group. More technically oriented occupa- our projections data to deter- tions with large numbers of openings include phar- mine which occupations offer macy technicians, licensed practical nurses, medical the best employment outlook? records technicians and dental hygienists. Higher- You can examine growth rates skilled healthcare occupations in demand include or projected openings. Keep in physicians (of all specialties), dentists, and pharma- mind that openings result both cists (along with registered nurses). from growth and replacement of individuals who have left the Nice to Know. . . occupation. Both these indicators have their merits. However, we Of course, growth rates are helpful in knowing suggest you consider the number which occupations are expanding rapidly. On aver- of projected openings first, then age, healthcare occupations are expected to expand look at the growth rate. at a 4 percent annual rate—noticeably higher than the 2.8 percent rate for all occupations. Interestingly enough, of the nine fastest-growing healthcare occu- The Best Figure. . . pations, five fall in the lower-skilled support catego- Here’s why: Our most recent 10-year ry, three are technical occupations, and only one— projections (through 2016) show phy- physician assistant—hails from the highly skilled sician assistants with a high growth “practitioner” category. rate—more than 5 percent per year. Registered nurses are projected to dis- It’s in the Stars play an average annual growth rate of 4 percent. But, consider this: pro- Finally, we have one last way to look at occupations. jections show almost 1,000 openings Star ratings combine employment outlook (based on for nurses per year compared to only both openings and growth rate) and wages to rank 40 for physician assistants. occupations. Five-star occupations have the best em- ployment outlook and the best wages of occupations Which occupation provides the most in their particular training level. The healthcare occu- opportunity for employment suc- pations at the right received a five-star rating. 10 November/December 2009
  11. 11. Registered Nurses 980 Nursing Aides/Orderlies 410 Home Health Aides 340 Medical Assistants 340 Average Annual Five-star 280 Dental Assistants Openings Healthcare Total Physicians 270 Occupations Pharmacy Technicians 200 Utah  Licensed Practical/Vocational 140 Nurses Healthcare • Cardiovascular Technologists Medical Records Technicians 130 Occupations and Technicians with the • Dentists 120 Most Openings Dental Hygienists 2006-2016 • Dentists, General Pharmacists 110 • Family and General Dental Hygienists 100 Practitioners • Occupational Therapist Practitioners Technical Support Assistants • Pharmacists Utah • Pharmacy Technicians Fastest Growing Healthcare Occupations • Physical Therapists 2006-2016 All Occupations 2.8% 980 • Physician Assistants Total Healthcare Occupations 4% • Registered Nurses • Respiratory Therapists Home Health Aides 7.3% Medical Assistants 5.9% Physical Therapist Assistants 5.4% For more information about the employment outlook for various occupations: Pharmacy Technicians 5.4% Annual Dental Hygienists 5.3% Average Growth Physican Assistants 5.3% Rate Dental Assistants 5.2% Physical Therapist Aides 5.1% Veterinary Technicians 5% Practitioners Technical Support Source: Utah Department of Workforce Services. Trendlines 11
  12. 12. national news | by mark knold, chief economist Is the Recession Easing Up? A recession losing its grip does not mean a recession gone T here is much talk in the media that the recession is In fact, this inventory shortfall is the main variable driving beginning to loosen its grip on the nation’s economy. many economic analysts to assume that there will be GDP It is still too early to definitively say the recession is growth in the second half of 2009. easing, but the fact that there are currently conflicting signals about the economy in the various statistics is probably a Then there are the signals from the down side. Unemployment signal in and of itself that the recession is losing its grip. claims are still high, though trending downward. Job losses are still being counted on a monthly basis by the Bureau of Historically, when one follows the cycle of a recession, in the Labor Statistics, and the unemployment rate is still trending initial and developing stages there are basically no economic higher and expected to keep going higher. variables sending any type of positive signal. It is quite clear that all things are negative. But once a recession approaches In a recession, unemployment will actually be one of the last or even reaches its eventual bottom, history shows the indicators to shift from negative to positive. This has also economic signals become mixed. Some begin pointing up; been observed in past recessions. Particularly deep recessions, others keep pointing down. That appears to be the current like this one, produce many discouraged workers—those who message from the national economic landscape. have lost a job and have also given up looking for a new job. Therefore, they are not officially counted as unemployed. But The housing market was both a starting point and a major when many of these idle laborers sense that the economy is casualty of this recession. Yet, recent data suggests that the improving and that they may now be able to find a job, they worst for this industry in now behind us. Sales of both new become active again in the labor force. When they do, they and existing homes are beginning to rise once again, and the become classified as unemployed. So this actually causes the home-price slide seems to have stabilized. unemployment rate to rise even further, putting a final spike on that variable’s long recessionary rise. Another factor is the second-quarter performance of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Though it still produced a The recession does appear to be losing its grip. But does that fourth quarter in a row of declining GDP, the decline was mean the recession is over? It’s tempting to say that it is, but not as deep as anticipated. Most analysts are expecting a a recession losing its grip does not have to mean a recession positive GDP number for the third quarter of 2009. Business gone. If nothing else, though, loosening its grip is the first inventories are way down and appear to need replenishing. step in the right direction. 12 November/December 2009
  13. 13. U.S. Gross Domestic Product Percent Change from Preceding Quarter* Source: U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis * Chain-weighted 2005 dollars Trendlines 13
  14. 14. what's happening | by john mathews, economist What is Healthcare? The Industry A bout one in ten Utah workers is Is healthcare a growing industry? Healthcare Wages—Across a Wide employed in healthcare. Where Spectrum, Big Bucks and Small Cents Yes, and it is largely the only industry do these healthcare workers growing at this time. Healthcare is Wages in healthcare span the range work? The broad industry sector of generally recession-resistant, not from the highest of all occupations in healthcare is divided up into four sub- recession-proof. Still, the industry the state to some of the lowest wages. industries. Most people think if you are continues to grow even in light of the There is a direct relationship between in healthcare, you work at a hospital. shrinking broader economy. In 2008, education and earnings. Those at Not so. Only about 27 percent, or employment in healthcare grew by an the top of the earning list are the 30,900, of all 114,400 Utah healthcare annual rate of 5.3 percent. Compared medical professionals that include industry jobs, are in hospitals. Did you to Utah’s overall total growth rate of 0.1 physicians, surgeons and dentists— know there are different hospital types? percent, that’s growth at light speed. As those professions that require extensive Most hospitals are “general medical and population grows and baby boomers training and professional licensure. surgical” but nearly 4,000 workers are age (the first baby boomers reach age Also included in the top earnings are employed in psychiatric and substance 65 in 2011), the demand for healthcare medical and health managers. Most abuse facilities, and there are a number continues to increase. Regardless of the of the high-level occupations in this of rehabilitation and transitional care method of healthcare reform that is group had annual earnings in excess of hospitals as well. currently being implemented, people $100,000. The largest healthcare sub-industry sec- will still need healthcare services. continued on page 16 tor is “ambulatory healthcare services.” It accounts for 40 percent of total healthcare workers, or 46,100. These Utah Healthcare Industry Sub-Sectors are the doctors offices in clinics, out- as a Percent of Total Healthcare Employment patient care centers, laboratories, home health care, and others. In Utah, nearly & Number of Firms in 2008 4,900 establishments were active in this sub-sector. Most of these offices are Social Assist. (Family Svcs., Voc. Rehab., Child Care) small in terms of employment. Nursing & Residential Care 19% 14% Another 21,300 employees work in the 500 rms 960 rms sub-sector of “nursing and residential care facilities.” In 2008, nearly 500 of these establishments were active Total Healthcare around the state. Employment = 114,400 The last sub-sector is social assistance. It includes individual and family services, vocational rehabilitation services, emergency and other relief services, and Hospitals childcare services. Combined, about 14 27% Ambulatory (doctors o ces, percent of total healthcare workers, or 70 rms labs, home health, other) 16,100, are employed in this industry 40% that has about 960 firms. 4,900 rms Source: Utah Department of Workforce Services, Workforce Information. 14 November/December 2009
  15. 15. Utah Healthcare Occupational Employment* Healthcare Technologists & Technicians Healthcare Support Aides 23.4% & Assistants 32.8% Total Healthcare Occupational Employment = 85,230 Medical & Health Service Managers 2.9% Health Diagnosing & Treating Practitioners 40.9% *2006 employment estimate. Source: Utah Department of Workforce Services, Workforce Information. Trendlines 15
  16. 16. what's happening | by john mathews, economist 2008 Median Utah Healthcare Occupations Wages Health Diagnosing and Treating Practitioners Audiologists $55,470 continued from page 14 Chiropractors 52,270 The next group of healthcare Dentists, General 101,780 occupations includes the technologists Dietitians and Nutritionists 45,870 and technicians. These job titles Medical and Health Service Managers* 80,880 reported median wages from $23,000 to Occupational Therapists 63,150 about $65,000. There is a mix of training requirements for the technologists and Optometrists 101,730 technicians that assist the practitioners. Pediatricians, General 165,480 Some require very little training and Pharmacists 104,840 some must have a bachelor’s degree and be licensed. These 15 occupations Physical Therapists 65,240 include cardiovascular technologists Physician Assistants 87,300 and technicians, LPNs, lab technologists Psychiatrists 131,700 and technicians, nuclear medicine Radiation Therapists 70,170 technologists, opticians, radiologic technologists and technicians, and Recreational Therapists 34,300 others. Registered Nurses 56,640 Respiratory Therapists 53,580 Healthcare workers that support the above two groups are the aides and Speech-Language Pathologists 55,860 assistants. They work in the following Veterinarians 71,010 healthcare areas: dental, home health, Health Technologists and Technicians medical (assistants), transcriptionists, Cardiovascular Technologists and Technicians $49,840 nurse aides, occupational therapy, physical therapy, and others. Typically, Dental Hygienists 65,860 assistants earn more than aides. Wages Diagnostic Medical Sonographers 59,020 in these support titles typically earn Dietetic Technicians 23,370 $20,000 to $30,000 per year, but Emergency Medical Technicians and Paramedics 28,440 some, like the occupational assistants Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses 37,290 and physical therapy assistants, make Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technicians 28,320 around $40,000. Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technologists 50,580 Medical Records and Health Information Technicians 27,370 Industry With a Future Nuclear Medicine Technologists 62,410 Healthcare will become an even more Opticians, Dispensing 30,530 important industry as America’s Pharmacy Technicians 30,230 population ages and needs more Radiologic Technologists and Technicians 43,760 health-related attention. People are not only working longer but living Respiratory Therapy Technicians 36,910 longer. This industry will provide great Surgical Technologists 33,370 career opportunities for that segment Veterinary Technologists and Technicians 23,670 of the workforce interested in serving Healthcare Support Occupations in healthcare. Dental Assistants $26,610 Home Health Aides 20,490 For more information on the healthcare industry in Utah see the industry fact Massage Therapists 27,850 sheet on line: Medical Assistants 25,430 ms/wi/statewide/ifsheets/healthcare.pdf Medical Transcriptionists 30,750 Nursing Aides, Orderlies, and Attendants 21,590 Occupational Therapist Aides 21,140 Occupational Therapist Assistants 43,240 Physical Therapist Aides 18,510 Physical Therapist Assistants 38,320 Veterinary Assistants and Laboratory Animal Caretakers 19,060 *Managers are classified in another category but included with the professional for convenience. 16 November/December 2009
  17. 17. insider news | by kimberley bartel, manager Plan and manage your career from grade school to retirement! There’s A New Education and Career Planning System in Town: A re you thinking of entering the links to Utah training information. tuition, and programs of study for workforce for the first time in There are helpful hints and infor- all accredited, public and private many years? Are you tired of mation for organizing and con- two- and four-year colleges and your job and need a change? Have you ducting a job search, and for keep- universities. lost your job and want to do something ing and excelling in your job. different? Do you want to be involved • Find major sources of financial aid in the career development process with • Check out the internet links to for college and specific informa- your child? web sites for colleges, online appli- tion on more than $550 million in cations, professional associations, grants and scholarships. If you answered “yes” to any of these licensing organizations, appren- questions, it would be worth your time ticeships, JOBcentral, and other • Investigate careers in the military, to visit where you can: resources that expand research and military work life, and education planning opportunities. and training opportunities. • Create online portfolios where in- formation of interest can be stored • Generate a course plan based on • Use the Employer Locator to search including, exploration tools, per- career and educational goals. The for employers across the U.S. that sonal reflections, plans, and educa- plan can include classes for 9th are most likely to hire for specific tion and work histories. through 12th grades plus two years occupations. It provides the em- of postsecondary education. ployer’s name, address, telephone • Take assessments that can help you number, and size. identify your interests, aptitudes, • Use the information entered in skills and work preferences. The re- your education and work histories • Assist your child with his/her sults of your assessment are linked to generate a professional resume. career exploration. You and your to training and career information, child can access the portfolio which can guide you through ca- • Research postsecondary education he/she created at school, take reer pathways. opportunities, from associate to assessments, look at the Reality professional degrees based on your Check feature (how much will his/ • Find information about specific career goals, and links to schools her lifestyle cost?), and investigate jobs including duties, require- offering these programs. different occupations together. ments, outlook, wages, skills, and preparation requirements. You • View detailed information about can help Utah citizens can see real world interviews, oc- U.S. colleges and universities in- plan and manage their careers from cupational videos and job-specific cluding admission requirements, grade school to retirement. Trendlines 17
  18. 18. occupations | by linda marling church, research analyst Pharmacist: On Duty W hat do O. Henry, Benedict Arnold, Sir Isaac Newton, Hubert Humphrey and Ned Flanders have in common? If you guessed that they were all pharmacists at one time—you’re correct! A pharmacist, as defined in the Standard Occupational Classification Manual, is one who dispenses drugs prescribed by health practitioners and provides information to patients about medications and their uses. They may advise physicians and other health practitioners on the selection, dosage, interactions, and side effects of medications. In early nineteenth century America, pharmacy was a trade, not a profession, and entering the field was through apprenticeship programs. Pharmacists were experts in chemistry and botany with knowledge not only of wine- making, but perfumes, essential oils and soda fountain syrups. Most took pride in producing their own medicine rather than purchasing them from manufacturers who were scarce in number and had a reputation for poor products. Many of the current drug companies were founded by pharmacists from that era. Prior to 1992, a bachelor of science in pharmacy was ad- equate education. After that year, all U.S. schools and col- leges of pharmacy went to the Doctor of Pharmacy as the only degree offered. It requires six years of study: two in 18 November/December 2009
  19. 19. There is a strong employment outlook and higher-than-average wages for pharmacists. pre-pharmacy and four in professional Pharmacy aides usually provide admin- pharmacy studies. To practice in any istrative support, such as answering wages state, a pharmacist must be licensed. phones, cashiering, stocking shelves, etc. In some states technician and aide About 62 percent of pharmacists prac- duties overlap; in others they are clear- tice in community pharmacies, either ly delineated. A high school diploma independently owned or chain drug- and on-the-job training is usually the Annual Median stores, grocery or department store or minimum requirement in this field. In mass merchandisers. About 20 percent Utah, pharmacy aide is a one-star job, United work in hospitals and the remainder meaning that it has a limited employ- Utah States are employed by home healthcare, ment outlook and low wages. pharmaceutical manufacturers, health Pharmacist $104,840 $106,410 insurance companies, public health- Remember the earlier mention of soda Pharmacy care services, college faculty, and the fountain syrups? In the 19th century, $ 30,230 $ 27,710 Technician military, to name a few. it was common for pharmacists to sell Pharmacy mineral water, believed to have heal- $ 20,350 $ 20,100 Pharmacist is deemed a five-star job in Aide ing powers. They often mixed bark, Utah, which means that it requires a nuts, berries and herbs in it to improve bachelor’s degree or higher, has a strong the taste and efficacy. After it was dis- employment outlook and higher-than- covered that mineral water bubbled Data from Utah Department of Workforce average wages. because of carbon dioxide content, a Services, May, 2008 method was developed to carbonate Today, pharmacists are assisted in their mineral water. From that beginning, duties by pharmacy technicians and Pepsi Cola®, Vernor’s Ginger Ale®, pharmacy aides. Technicians, who Coca Cola® and Dr. Pepper® were all are also licensed and under the di- developed by pharmacists. rect supervision of a pharmacist, may measure, mix, count, label and record amounts and dosages of medications. Administrative duties include main- For more information, see: taining patients’ records, preparing • insurance claim forms, and taking in- ventories. The duties vary depending • on state rules and regulations. Most • are trained on the job and most states homepage/ have put a limit on how many techni- cians can be employed per pharmacist. • utalmis/ The pharmacist is required to check the technician’s work before it is dispensed. • Pharmacy technician in Utah is also a pubs/licensedoccup/ five- star job. Trendlines 19
  20. 20. our guest | by cheryl s. smith, office of consumer health services Utah Health Exchange O ffering affordable health insur- Exchange allows employers to offer ance benefits is an increasingly greatly expanded health plan options difficult proposition for Utah’s to their employees. Employees will small businesses. Small businesses gen- use the Exchange to compare plans erally pay more for their health insur- and providers and select the option ance coverage while having fewer plan best tailored to their individual needs; options available. The Utah Health no more one-size-fits-all benefits Exchange was created to reverse that packages. equation. In the Exchange, employers will be able to designate a defined con- Advantages for employers are equally tribution—a specified dollar amount— as attractive. In defined contribution to be contributed toward a health in- arrangements, employees, not em- surance plan selected by the employee, ployers, can compare and select the also via the Exchange. Defined contri- health plan that works best for their bution arrangements offer a number individual needs and circumstances of advantages to both employees and via the Exchange. Employees may also employers. pay their premium contribution with pre-tax dollars, thus reducing their tax The Utah Health Exchange gives liability. Certain plans available via Advantages for employees: employers expanded opportunities. the Exchange may also allow pre-tax Defined contribution plans simplify contributions to a health savings ac- • Individual control and the management of a company’s count (HSA) which is then individually choice health benefit options. By enrolling in a defined contribution plan via owned by the employee. The Exchange also allows for plan por- • Pay with pre-tax dollars the Exchange, the only decision an tability, so employees can keep their employer has to make is how much coverage even if they change jobs, pro- • Plan portability to contribute towards each employee’s viding that both employers participate health benefit. Employers will no in a defined contribution plan. • Premium aggregation longer be responsible to choose between multiple plans, insurance companies, and provider networks. Furthermore, Finally, the Exchange allows employees by making a defined contribution to aggregate premium contributions from multiple sources. The Exchange Advantages for employers: rather than choosing a company-wide facilitates paying plan premiums health plan, employers can predict and from the defined contribution of • Simplified benefits contain health benefit costs from year the employer, the contribution of to year. management the employee, and other possible A defined contribution plan also allows contributions from a second employer, • Predictable and controllable employers to continue to offer the tax a spouse’s employer, etc. benefits of an employer-sponsored costs plan. Employees can pay their portion Until spring of 2010 the UHE is of their health premium with pre-tax closed for new applicants while the • Preservation of tax benefits dollars, which reduces the employee’s system is being beta tested to verify all taxable income and also reduces the components work in a timely manner • Expanded health care employer’s FICA obligations. for those companies who have already coverage options for The Exchange will help Utah’s small registered. Following the completion of the system tests the site will re-open employees businesses control their costs while to new applicants. Small businesses offering expanded health coverage can log on to the system and request options to their employees. Enrolling notification when the exchange in a defined contribution plan via the reopens for enrollments. 20 November/December 2009
  21. 21. county highlight | by lecia parks langston, economist Iron County I ron County is often overshadowed by its larger and flashier neighbor to the south. However, the The Two Gentlemen of Verona county certainly deserves economic Justin Matthew Gordon (left) as attention in its own right. For most Valentine, Carly Germany as of this decade, Iron has consistently Sylvia, and Timothy Pyles as ranked among Utah’s fastest-growing Turio in the Utah Shakespearean counties. Festival’s 2008 production of The Two Gentlemen of Verona. Manufacturing plays a particularly (Photo by Karl Hugh. Copyright Utah important role in providing jobs in Shakespearean Festival 2008.) Iron County and maintains the same share of total employment as in the state as a whole. That’s an unusual situation for a nonurban county. This dependence can work to the county’s detriment since a downturn typically hits manufacturing hard. During the current recession, Iron County has had to deal the double-whammy of a housing bubble collapse and the loss of Mining 0% its “bread and butter” manufacturing 1% jobs as well. 8% Southern Utah University (the site of Construction 8% Utah's Shakespearean Festival) plays Manufacturing 10% an important role in the economy pro- 10% viding jobs, an abundant student labor 18% supply, and a backdrop for one of the Trade/Trans/Util state's premier cultural events. 20% Information 1% For more information on Iron County, go 3% to: Financial Activities 5% 6% Iron 8% Utah Prof/Bus Services 13% Ed/Health/Social Svcs. 10% 2008 Nonfarm 11% Leisure/Hospitality 9% 11% Job Distribution by Industry* Other Services 2% 3% Government 27% 17% *Does NOT include covered agriculture. Source: Utah Department of Workforce Services. Trendlines 21
  22. 22. dws news | by lecia parks langston, economist Netting a Job on the Internet F inding a job requires a multi-pronged attack. Just one of the tools in your job-search arsenal is the internet. But, perhaps you’re not a web surfer and don’t know “ftp” from “html.” Why even bother with the internet? • It’s there 24/7. It’s available anytime: weekends, holidays, the dead of night (when the kids are finally in bed)—anytime. • No Limits. You can search for jobs in your own hometown or in Cameroon. • Demonstrate Your Leading-Edge Skills. Finding an opportunity on-line or researching on the internet before an interview demonstrates you have some technical skills. • Explore Alternatives You Haven’t Considered. Not quite sure what you really want to be “when you grow up?” Self-assessment tools, occupational exploration, training-program information are all online. • It’s Where the Jobs Are. Many companies require electronic resumés and find applicants exclusively online. Getting Started The biggest problem with the internet is the vast quantity of information. It may seem like too much information. Keep in mind that the internet is a tool, and like all tools, it is only as good as the skill of the user. Learning to use the internet productively (like most things) takes time and effort. Don’t be overwhelmed! Ask a friend or librarian (or your kid) for help, if you need it. 22 November/December 2009
  23. 23. Before you start your internet job search, you might want to ask yourself a few questions that will help you narrow your employment search. Here are just a few links to get you • What kind of work do you want to do? Come started on that internet job search: up with general occupations that interest you—not specific job titles. Often you will need to search for •Utah Dept. of Workforce Services job duties rather than job titles—many businesses use their own unique job titles. •Other State Job Banks • Who do you want to work for? Are you interested only in certain industries? Do you want to work for a large employer? Do you have a specific •Federal Government Jobs employer in mind? • Where do you want to work? Will you move •State Government Jobs anywhere for the right job or do you want to work in Enterprise, Utah? •Career Builder Finding the Right Sites The right site for you will depend on how you answered the questions listed above. For example, large •Hot Jobs (Yahoo) international sites are probably not your choice if you’re looking for a job in rural Utah. Here are some other things to consider about each site: •Monster • Is it easy to use? •Job Central • Do they keep your identity confidential? • Can you search with precision? •Employment Guide • Are the job listings dated so you know when they were added? • How often is it updated? •Care Givers Job Clearing House • Who runs the service? • Do you know someone who uses this service? •Get a Job • If they charge a fee, is it worth it? •Job Hunt Of course, we think the best place to start is the no- charge Utah Department of Workforce Services web site: Just go to the web site and click on “Find •Salt Lake City Help Wanted a Job.” You can also use our online directory of Utah businesses to find employers in an industry/area that typically employs your particular occupation: jobs.utah. •Southern Utah Help Wanted gov/jsp/firmfind. Trendlines 23