The Nursing Shortage
The nursing shortage is hitting hard and it’s hitting fast. According to Reuters, hospitals are offering various incentives, including sign-on bonuses, to recruit new nurses. They also are offering low cost housing and career mentoring.
Next, hospitals are investing more in travel nurses. A hospital in Charleston, West Virginia, doubled the amount they spend on travel nurses to $12,000,000 compared to 3 years ago, making a huge financial impact on their already struggling budget. [Click for article]
The article went on to note how rural hospitals are being forced to pay higher wages and provide more benefits to stay competitive with metropolitan hospitals.
This shortage will grow an additional 16% by 2024, more than double the rate when applied to the rate for all occupations. This, of course, will mean that there will be more and more demand for nurses.
Lastly, the aging “baby boomer” population with the increased need for more medical services including those suffering from more complex medical conditions is being coupled with the fact that more nurses are retiring; all contributing to the nursing shortage.
If you are having trouble finding a nursing position or if your license happens to be on probation … hang in there. If you want to relocate to a more rural area, you might receive higher pay and more benefits.
Now is the time we need some kind of control, such as mandatory minimum staffing requirements. I also would like to see a separate charge for nursing services so that the field can step into the powerful position of being a revenue producing center. We need to take advantage of this shortage, right now, so that we can come to have some control over our profession and of what is asked of us!
The medical profession needs you now more than ever.