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Shortage of Nurses in the Usa

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Shortage of Nurses in the Usa

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  • Jan. 2013
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The nursing shortage in the United States is much worse than previous shortages. Combining an aging population and fewer nursing students in school is a catalyst for nurse burn-out in hospitals that are already short staffed. The United States is hiring more and more foreign trained nurses. These nurses are filling many vacancies, many in less attractive areas and there is a marked difference in their educational level compared to their American counterparts. Both of these traits are impressive in trying to alleviate a nursing shortage. Research suggests that hiring foreign nurses is beneficial because of their ability to alleviate the nursing shortage, because of their advanced education, and because of their willingness to work in the least populated areas.

Historically, the United States has had its issues with nursing shortages. The reason for this shortage is because the average age of a Registered Nurse has increased, because nursing school enrollment are stagnant, and because of the nursing school faculty shortage that is restricting nursing program enrollments. There is a strong interest in entering the nursing profession; there is a lack of faculty to teach in the nursing schools. In 2009, nursing schools in the United States denied admission to 54,991 qualified applicants from baccalaureate and graduate nursing programs due to a lack of faculty, clinical sites, classroom space, clinical preceptors, and budget constraints. The chief reasons for the deficit of faculty to meet the demand for more nurses include the aging of the present faculty coupled with impending retirement. To exacerbate the problem even further, on top of the lack of faculty, an additional 257 faculty positions need to be created just to accommodate student demand. (AACN, 2010). The average age of a Registered Nurse has risen to 47 in 2008 which is up from 46.8 just 4 years prior to that. (AACN, 2010). By 2012, nurses in their 50’s are likely to be the most prevalent group of...