While many people might not realize that there is a current shortage of nurses in the division’s workforce, it has actually been an increasing problem throughout many different countries in the world. According to the article The New Nursing Shortage, Ramachandran (2014) states, “the recent recession made it more difficult for entry-level nurses to find work, as more experienced nurses put off retirement and stayed in the job force.” This is likely not only happening within the United States, but also with other countries throughout the world as well. Many people are working right past the general retirement age in order to secure themselves financially for whenever they do decide to retire from their nursing career. The article continues to explain how the demand for nurses within the United States is expected to increase mainly in part from the aging baby boomer population, which means that the demand for nurses will be even greater in the near future.
Another aspect that strongly contributes to the current shortage of nurses is the shortage of qualified staff which is needed to teach within nursing schools. Ramachandran (2014) explains, “it’s tough to replace aging faculty at nursing schools with well-paid nurse practitioners and midwives. Taking teaching jobs over well-paying gigs at hospitals is a tough sell.” Additionally, the average salary loss for a nurse practitioner or midwife to become a nursing school educator would be approximately $20,000 to $30,000 each year, which makes it blatantly obvious as to the reasoning behind the shortage of educators. There are very few people in this world who would take such a dramatic pay cut in order to become an educator within the nursing field. The article also goes on to mention that approximately 79,000 nursing school applicants were denied acceptance to nursing schools in 2013 specifically due to these qualified faculty shortages.
According to additional findings, there are many additional factors that are also affecting the nursing industry shortage which Nevidjon and Erickson (2001) state, “employees today seek more personal time versus financial compensation.” The responsibilities of being a nurse can be quite stressful and overwhelming, which makes employees want to take more time away from actually being at work so that they might regain their composure before exposing themselves to it once again. This means that staff levels are essentially lower than normal, and thus puts patients’ medical needs at risk. Nevidjon and Erickson (2001) also state that “the public is hearing about the stress nurses experience and the shortage of staff in hospitals; these reports prompt many to feel it is unsafe to leave family alone when hospitalized. There are images of striking nurses and headlines of layoffs and downsizing because of managed care. There are stories of nursing errors that have injured or killed patients.” If potential nursing students hear about these downfalls within the industry, they might then be deterred from the actual desire or idea to help others that they once felt compelled to become a part of. It is very important for nurses to have a positive impression over the general public, because they are the ones who we entrust our loved ones with when they are sick or injured.
On a more positive note, there are now more programs designed for those in the nursing industry who might feel overwhelmed and stressed by the job’s high physical and mental demands. Many employers offer children’s daycare, elder care, on-site banking, along with many more. By having these programs available to them, nurses should no longer feel the weight of stress from home on their shoulders while they are at work, caring for others who are in need of their attention and care.
Nevidjon, RN, B., & Erickson, RN, J.I. (2001). The Nursing Shortage: Solutions for the Short
and Long Term. The Online Journal of Issues in Nursing, 6. Retrieved from:
Ramachandran, V. (2014, May 7). The new nursing shortage. USA Today. Retrieved from: