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Nursing Shortage

Nursing Shortage

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Published by jadesso1981
The problems facing the health care industry with regards to obtaining nurses and the vicious cycle preventing the education and training of the professionals needed to care for the growing, and aging, population.
The problems facing the health care industry with regards to obtaining nurses and the vicious cycle preventing the education and training of the professionals needed to care for the growing, and aging, population.

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Categories:Types, School Work
Published by: jadesso1981 on Apr 30, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Running Head: THE NURSING SHORTAGE 1The Nursing ShortageDoes It Really Exist?Jamie A. AdessoEmpire State College Author NoteThis paper was prepared for Planning and Finalizing the Degreetaught by Professor Daly
The Nursing Shortage 2On June 3, 2011, the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that thehealthcare industry increased its number of employees by 44,600 from April to May of this year. Among these new healthcare professionals, Registered Nurses made upalmost a fifth of the employees hired during this one-month period, leading some tobelieve that there is no longer a nursing shortage (Bureau of Labor and Statistics [BLS],2011). However, the fact that there are somewhere between 150,000 to 200,000available nursing jobs at present that need to be filled strongly supports that there is infact a nursing shortage (American Association of Colleges of Nursing [AACN], 2011,para. 9; The Spokesman-Review, 2011, para.1). While this appears to be the case, asis believed by medical professionals, students, and patients, Registered Nurses that areunemployed believe that if there really were a nursing shortage, they would have a job.
 A shortage, by definition, is “
a condition that exists whendemandexceedssupplybecause of a lack of equilibriumin a market
” (The American Heritage New
Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, 2005). In regards to a nursing shortage, the definition is
not much different, as it states that, “a
nursing shortage is a condition in which thedelicate balance of nurse supply and nurse demand are not at equilibrium. [It] is definedas a situation in which the demand for employment of nurses exceeds the availablesupply of nurses willing to be employed at a given salary. A nursing shortage is not justa matter of understaffing, [which] can occur in conditions of shortage, equilibrium, or 
surplus…” (
Huber, 2006, p. 587). If the demand for nurses is in fact greater than theactual supply, as suggested by the AACN, then what is the cause behind this shortage?
Contributing Factors
The Nursing Shortage 3Several theories exist as to why there may be a nursing shortage. Some peoplebelieve it is because of the lack of educators, while others believe it has to do withfunding. It is also possible that there is a shortage due to high employee turnover, lackof job applicants, or strict hiring guidelines. Any or all of these issues could becontributing factors to the nursing shortage, and each deserves a closer look so that acause may be determined. A lack of nurse educators in colleges is, without a doubt, an issue. A survey donein 2005 by the Michigan Center for nursing determined that almost a fifth of currentnurse educators intend to retire over the next few years, and more than a third of thenursing programs surveyed are claiming to have a hard time filling these job openings(Beeke, 2008, para. 3). Another issue facing college nursing programs is the shortageof clinical placements, which allows nursing students to gain the hands-on and workexperience they need before starting their career as a nurse. Without the cooperation of a hospital, the students cannot fulfill all of the program requirements, which leads to theprograms suspension or elimination.The number of students enrolling in nursing schools or programs has steadilydeclined over the years, which is another contributing factor to the nursing shortage. If no one wants to be a nurse, there is nothing anyone can do short of offering incentives.Currently, the number of students in nursing programs is significantly smaller than thoseneeded to fill hospital positions (AACN, 2011, para. 16). The nursing profession is either being overlooked or students just cannot obtain the funding to attend these schools.Funding is a problem facing both, schools and hospitals. Teacher funding is anissue that needs a resolution, since additional education is necessary to become a

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