home Nursing Shortage Nurse Retention and the Nursing Shortage

Nurse Retention and the Nursing Shortage

There’s no surprise in the reality that the United States is in the middle of a nursing crisis. According to some statistics, currently there is an estimated shortage of 150,000 nurses in the U.S. alone. Over the next ten years or so, there will be a need for over 650,000 new nursing jobs, while at the same time 450,000 nurses will have left the profession. Most predict that the shortage will equal to a need of approximately 800,000 nurses!

There are however a number of nurses (Aprrox. 300,000+), most of whom fall under the “baby boomer” demographic that are no longer working and could help buffer the shortage. Many of the reasons for leaving are a result of the shortage. When hospitals make certain cutbacks it has a ripple effect that is felt from the top down. If hospitals can figure out a way to retain these nurses by offering different incentives such as, lighter workloads, bonuses and so forth. There may be a chance to keep “veteran” nurses around a lot longer to help teach and groom new nurses just entering the profession.

The nursing profession is still very appealing, it’s just there isn’t enough faculty or class space to accommodate the numbers. Some states are taking the initiative and offering grants for nursing-school expansions to help with the increasing numbers being turned away. These new initiatives are in their infancy and it is still debatable whether this will have a positive affect. Besides the issues with education, a bigger and more severe problem is contributing to the nursing shortage.

To compensate for certain staffing shortages, hospitals have made major budget cuts which in turn makes them make adjustments in patient care. Never is this good thing. Often times nurses are told to keep the amount of time with patients to a minimum, which leads to the obvious, poor patient care. There are nursing organizations trying to implement laws in which the ratio of nurse to patient are increased to ensure there are enough nurses to provide the quality care patients expect.
These are just a couple important factors to this ever growing nursing shortage and without governments and educational institutions taking action, things will only get worse.

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Patrick Fuerstenau

Patrick Fuerstenau here. Born in Kentucky, raised in Germany, landed in Nebraska and still here. I've been involved with Marketing and Advertising for over a decade. It all began with an internship at an ad agency in Omaha, followed by a 9 year stint as a graphic artist at the lone major newspaper in Omaha. A friend of mine told me about an opening at her company and said that it was the best gig she's ever had... So I decided to spread my proverbial wings and see what I could do for them and vice versa. So here I am at Medical Solutions and am going on my 3rd year as a Marketing Specialist for a great travel nursing company. This by far has been a major blessing in my life. I love the work I get to do just as much as I love the people who make up this fabulous company. I can see myself here for a long time... As long as they'll have me. Now that we've got the career timeline out of the way... Let me tell you a little about who I am. I am oh so passionate about the game of futbol! I've been playing soccer since the age of 8 and am still playing today. If I couldn't at least kick the ball around, I don't know what I would do with myself. I fear getting old. I also have a strong love for the arts... Music, Visual arts, Film, Design... pretty much anything and everything arty. I'm happy go lucky and am always looking to have a good time. Just ask my manager! And I love writing about travel nursing.