Rural Versus Urban: Tennessee Health Administrators’ Strategies on Recruitment and Retention for Allied Health Professionals

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Due to an increase in the need for allied health professionals, there is a growing interest to assess the allied health workforce and its employment needs. This is especially true in medically underserved rural areas where there is a critical shortage of allied health professionals. A survey was sent to allied health administrators across a variety of allied health disciplines working in Tennessee hospitals in order to gauge opinions on retention and recruitment strategies. Overall successful strategies for recruitment and retention of allied health professionals were reported as well as differences between urban and rural areas, differences of perceptions of strategy effectiveness among allied health disciplines, and key strategies for rural allied health recruitment. Little is known about organizational policies impacting recruitment and retention practices of allied health professionals in Tennessee hospitals. Understanding of this problem is vital to the prevention of a critical shortage of allied health professionals. Therefore, this study sought to compare rural and urban hospital in Tennessee with respect to recruitment and retention needs.