Nursing Assistants in Nursing Homes: Key Facts

More than 600,000 nursing assistants provide personal care, assistance with daily activities, and clinical support for 1.4 million nursing home residents nationwide.

Download U.S. Nursing Assistants: Key Facts (pdf)

The poor quality of nursing assistant jobs makes it difficult for nursing homes to attract and retain enough workers to meet demand.

Wages Have Gone Down

Wages for nursing assistants have not kept up with inflation over the past 10 years: inflation-adjusted wages remained relatively stagnant, decreasing from $12.22 in 2005 to $11.87 in 2015. As a result of low wages and part-time work hours, nursing assistants in this industry earn a median annual income of $19,000 a year.

Injuries Are Up

Due in part to the repeated lifting and carrying required to assist residents, nursing assistants are 3.5 times more likely to be injured on the job than the typical U.S. worker.

Growing Demand

Nursing homes are expected to create an estimated 59,000 new nursing assistant jobs from 2014 to 2024. In coming years, the rapidly growing population of older adults will drive demand even higher: by 2050, the population of adults over the age of 65, who comprise 85 percent of the nursing home resident population, is projected to double, from 47.8 million to 88 million.

Largest Occupation

Nursing assistants outnumber any other occupation employed in nursing homes by a factor of at least three to one.

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