Report: Direct Care Workers In Iowa Are ‘Grossly Underpaid’

Des Moines, Iowa — The salaries of Iowa’s direct care workers have remained mostly stagnant in recent years, according to a recent report by the Iowa Caregivers, which represents certified nursing assistants and home health aides.

The organization compared Iowa Workforce Development data from 2019 to 2022, the most recent year available. It found, for example, the median wage for certified nurse aids increased just 62 cents during the period to 14 dollars, 42 cents per hour. Di Findley, executive director of Iowa Caregivers, says low wages are causing many workforce issues.

Findley says wages growing by less than five percent over four years is directly contributing to the worker shortage in the industry.

The report comes as many Iowa nursing homes are facing chronic staffing shortages of direct care workers.


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