Pictured from left: Gordon Schmidt, Djimmetry Jean-Louis, John Karaptis, and Donna M. McMahon
On April 11, New York Tech faculty and alumni were well represented among the leading voices on Long Island in a healthcare-focused event produced by Long Island Business News. Patrick O’Shaughnessy (D.O. ’99), president and chief executive officer of Catholic Health and a member of the Board of Trustees at New York Tech, served as keynote speaker and addressed the topic of food insecurity in patients.
Speakers on a number of panels addressed topics relating to Long Island’s place in the epicenter of healthcare research and innovation. A New York Tech panel, moderated by Gordon Schmidt, Ph.D., FACSM, dean of the School of Health Professions, focused on Workforce Development: Shaping the Next Generation of Healthcare Workers. Featured panelists included Donna M. McMahon (D.O. ‘87), assistant dean of student affairs and associate professor in the College of Osteopathic Medicine; John Karaptis (B.S.’03), administrative director of Surgical Services and Digestive Disease at New York-Presbyterian Queens, and Djimmetry Jean-Louis (B.S. ’15), a nurse manager with Northwell Health.
“Sometimes we find that the need for employees does not meet the availability,” said Schmidt. “It’s estimated there are probably 500,000 employees still needed in healthcare and, possibly because of the pandemic, we see that this is more critical than ever.”
When it comes to physician assistants, Karaptis noted the demand is sure to increase. “What we’re seeing now in some of the ancillary areas of healthcare, particularly with respiratory therapy and anesthesia technicians, there is a severe shortage for these positions in hospitals and it’s a very big problem. There are not enough training programs and the current training programs aren’t large enough, so that is an area that’s going to have to be looked at.”
Jean-Louis noted that nurses now have the upper hand in negotiating their salaries, and the industry is seeing a shortage when it comes to the ancillary staff. And that’s why more health systems are looking to employ nursing assistants.
One big change in healthcare education, said McMahon, is that medical residency programs have picked up on the importance of cultural competence. “I can see it certainly with our students; that they see the importance of that cultural competence.”
Read more about the forum.