Hospitals experienced their largest hiring increase since December 2020 by adding 16,000 employees. At 5.2 million jobs, the hospital industry's employment level is the highest it has been during the pandemic.
Physician offices added 5,800 jobs and have not seen job losses since a hiring plummet in April 2020.
Nursing homes added 1,300 jobs in May and residential mental health facilities added 1,400. Employment at nursing care facilities has been relatively stagnant since September 2021, with only modest monthly shifts.
Medical and diagnostic laboratories added 1,400 jobs and outpatient care centers added 1,100. Both subsectors employ more people than they did than prior to the pandemic. Employers providing ambulatory care services added 400 jobs, inching their way closer to pre-pandemic employment levels.
Offices of health practitioners had their first hiring dip since April 2020 and lost 3,900 jobs. Until last month, these employers had been on a fairly stable upward trend.
Other residential care facilities—including group homes for foster youth, delinquent youth and people with disabilities—lost jobs again last month, backtracking from their relatively high employment level in March.
The overall jobless rate has remained the same for the past few months at 3.6%, with approximately 6 million people unemployed in May. The jobless rate was 3.5% in February 2020, the month before the pandemic began in the U.S. An estimated 1.8 million people reported being unable to work last month due to closures or lost business linked to the pandemic, a number essentially unchanged from April.
Leisure and hospitality reported the largest gains with an estimated 84,000 new jobs in May, followed by professional and business services employers, which made 75,000 hires. The transportation and warehousing sector added 47,000 jobs, the third-highest among all industries.