[Excerpt from authors] Health human resources have emerged as a top priority for research and action. This paper echoes calls for a fundamentally new approach to the people side of the health care system - treating employees as assets that need to be nurtured rather than costs that need to be controlled. The scope of the human resources crisis in health care is multi-dimensional in its symptoms, underlying causes, and consequences. Finding solutions to these problems starts with the recognition that the performance of any health care organization depends on motivated, knowledgeable, and well-resourced employees. Especially important are relationships among co-workers and between employees and employers. Furthermore, the same work environment factors that help to meet organizational goals (i.e., a 'healthy' or well-functioning organization), also contribute to positive worker outcomes ranging from physical well-being to skill development and job satisfaction.