The nursing shortage is not stopping. Registered nurses are near the top of the list when it comes to employment growth (BLS 2012 Table 8 – RNs are #4). Additionally:
- Over the past decade, the average age of employed RNs has increased by nearly two years, from 42.7 years in 2000 to 44.6 years in 2010.
- America is seeing vast increases in the number of people over 65. This age group has many medical and health needs, and will put a strain on our health system.
- Recent reforms in healthcare will give millions of people access to the healthcare system. More nurses and health professionals are needed in response.
These factors, combined with an anticipated strengthening of the economy, will create a renewed critical shortage for nurses.
According to the Nursing World, while nursing shortage affords opportunity, there are negative effects to the nursing shortage. Nurses often need to work long hours under stressful conditions, which can result in fatigue, injury, and job dissatisfaction. Nurses suffering in these environments are more prone to making mistakes and medical errors. Patient quality can suffer. For these reasons, and more, ANA is dedicated to improving the workplace safety for nurses around the nation.
Nursing Shortage Legislation and Strategies ANA lobbies both houses of congress, as well as the federal agencies, on policies and legislation to bolster the number of RNs and nurse faculty.
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