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Will We Ever Be Rid of the Nursing Shortage?

Written by LeAnn Thieman, CSP, August 25th, 2015

The nursing shortage has been a recurring problem since the 1930’s. Even with the addition of Baccalaureate and Associates, there is still shortage of nurses. According to the America Nurses Association (ANA) the USA needs to produce 1.1 million new registered nurses by 2022 to fill the newly created jobs and to replace the exodus of retirees.

nurse shortageAlthough the shortage needs to be addressed, the goal should be to find long term solutions to this problem which seems to cycle about every 10-15 years.  Besides retiring baby boomers, the shortage is exacerbated by burned out nurses, unhappy nurses, and advance degree-seeking nurses moving away from bedside.

Turnovers are extremely costly. The cost of training each replacement nurse is estimated to be between $60,000 and $80,000. During the usual 12-15 week orientation, senior nurses take lighter patient assignments, which reduces the number of nurses delivering direct care. Sometimes new nurses feel disengaged or powerless in this new environment.

Other issues impacting nurse satisfaction are salary and stress. Factors include long shifts, fear of physical injury, and inability to meet patients’ needs.

Is your facility forward-thinking in terms of the looming nursing shortage? To learn how to increase nurse satisfaction, reduce stress, and improve life balance, visit SelfCare for HealthCare™. Contact me today to discuss a customized plan to increase your nurse retention and nurse recruitment.

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