The workforce is key to healthcare transformation, and to effectively meet transformation goals the healthcare industry needs early signals of changes in the occupations, skills, and roles required by evolving healthcare systems.

The Health Workforce Sentinel Network supports efficient and effective health workforce preparation and deployment by:

  • identifying emerging signals of changes in health workforce demand, and
  • rapidly disseminating this information to education, training and policy partners who can take action based on findings.

Health Workforce Sentinels:

  • help ensure the state’s health workforce is prepared to respond to the transforming health care environment,
  • have access to current and actionable information about emerging workforce needs, and
  • can compare their organization’s experiences and emerging workforce trends with aggregated responses about the experiences of similar employers.

Information provided by Health Workforce Sentinels is kept confidential and reported in aggregate form, grouped with responses from similar organizations.

The Sentinel Network began in Washington in 2016 as an initiative of Washington State’s Health Workforce Council, conducted collaboratively by Washington’s Workforce Board and the University of Washington’s Center for Health Workforce Studies and funded by the Healthier Washington initiative, with ongoing support from the Governor’s office and the Washington State Legislature.

In North Carolina, the NC Health Workforce Sentinel Network was launched in 2021, with funding and direction from the North Carolina Area Health Education Centers (NC AHEC) Program and participation by partners around the state.