Nursing positions remain vacant for long periods of time, but a shortage of nurses isn't the only problem, according to the Pew Charitable Trusts.
Many healthcare organizations are refining their requirements, reducing the pool of candidates, or can't offer wages to attract highly qualified candidates.
- Student loan assistance for nurses who work in high-need areas, more robust workplace training programs, and government funding for nursing residencies could help to alleviate the problem, the Pew Charitable Trusts noted.
Whether the nation is facing an impending shortage or surplus if nurse is up for debate, but it seems certain that there is a disconnect between nurses looking for work and employers looking to hire them.
Perhaps the most significant factor cited by the Pew Charitable Trusts article is rising requirements for nursing hires. Depending on their needs, employees are often looking for candidates with specific qualifications. When they find these candidates, they may not be able to offer a competitive enough salary to make a hire.
A four-year degree is one qualification more and more healthcare organizations are requiring of nursing hires. Several years ago, the National Academies of Science recommended 80% of nurses nationwide have a bachelor's degree by 2020.
In many ways, the problem with nurses reflects a broader trend occurring throughout most industries. Recent grad entering the job market don't have the skills or experience that is so highly in demand. To correct that problem, the Pew Charitable Trusts article suggested more comprehensive education, both while in school and on the job.