Nurses are also feeling dissatisfaction within their careers and many nurses across the country do not think costively about their field. It is important that the nursing shortage be controlled before the negative impacts of the deficiency are too great in damage. Together, hospitals, nursing programs, and the government must all work as a team in order to overcome the nursing shortage. The United States is suffering from a severe nursing shortage with no relief in sight due to many factors compounding the problem and resulting in compromised patient care and nursing being burned out.
Along with being burned out the nurses are also overwhelmed, distressed, and dissatisfied (Holland, Farrell & James, 2014). With this shortage of nurses’ means the urges that are available are having to take care of more patients than normal. Nurses of all specialties and institutional roles, and especially those in administrative and leadership positions in particular, must examine the contributing factors of the current nu rising shortage to familiarize themselves with the situation and determine what should be implemented to influence strategies for improvement (Holland, et al. 2014). There are numerous contributing factors such as older nurses are retiring and their positions are not being filled, nursing schools are not adequately staffed resulting in limited eats for the required classes needed to obtain a nursing license which results in qualified applicants being turned away or having to wait to enroll in classes. The nursing shortage most likely does not mean a great deal to people until they are in the care of a nurse.
Nursing shortages have been experienced in the past by the United States and have been overcome with team effort However, the current shortage is proving to be the most complex and great strides are being made to defeat the crisis before it becomes too difficult to change. Researchers anticipate that by 2016, the United States will need almost one million more registered nursed than will be available (Cherry & Jacob, 2006). It is important to recognize past nursing shortages because the events will assist researchers in examining the sources and strategies used to overcome the nursing deficit and facilitate a solution to the current crisis.
The term nursing shortage is not new to America. It has been discovered the shortage has went back as far as World War I and II. In the early 1 9305, nurses experienced the devastation of the depression. Families were very poor and unable to feed themselves let alone pay for a nursing visit. This caused many nurses to seek work elsewhere. Nurses who were lucky to be employees in hospitals during this time were given compensation with leftovers from the kitchen at the end of the day. America continued to grow stronger and become financially stable. This dilemma is nothing new.
Hospitals and healthcare organizations have experienced shortages in the past, but the current shortage seems to be the most long lasting because there are several factors compounding the problem (Chewer & Clamor, 201 1). The current shortage began around the mid-nineties when computers and technology began to soar in numbers. Careers in these areas drew many potential nurses into these fields because of the shorter education time, the stress of having another person’s life in your hands was gone, the pay was competitive, and the hours were not demanding.
Nursing began to feel the effects of the shortage a few years’ later when large numbers of baby-boomer nurses began to retire without anyone to replace them. The future demand for nurses is expected to increase dramatically as the baby boomers reach their sixties and beyond (Chewer & Clamor, 201 1 The best source to replace nurses is new graduate nurses. New graduate urges are young, eager to learn, and have a desire to help others. The only problem is that there are not enough graduate nurses to fill in the empty vacancies. The nursing shortage is not only in the hospitals, but also within nursing school faculties. Shortages in nursing instructors and spaces for clinical instruction prevent nursing programs from adding students quickly enough to satisfy the demand for nurses” (Kelly, 2010). This limits the available seats for qualified applicants and places a backlog on the waiting time for potential nursing students. Many potential students do not wait and Hereford begin to pursue other careers. Nursing programs also have a difficult time attracting nurses to become instructors because they have to compete with hospitals that give bonuses and incentives and make it more desirable to work within a hospital.
Nursing faculty are leaving nursing programs and returning to practice in a hospital because the incentives that a hospital can provide offset the incentives of being a nursing instructor. Nurses are also leaving hospitals because of job dissatisfaction from feeling underrepresented and stressed. To help compensate for the shortage any nurses are putting in extra hours on scheduled days off and working over schedule on regular workdays. With little recognition for their extra time put in, nurses begin to feel frustration and resentment toward their superiors creating a difficult working environment and dissatisfaction.
Nurses are already in a high stress career and many are deciding to leave because it is not worth the stress or the risk of losing their nursing license to practice. Nurses follow a code of ethics. Element nine of the Code for Nurses (American Nurses Association, 2011) states, “the nurse participates in the repression’s efforts to establish and maintain conditions of employment conducive to high quality nursing care. ” The statements further add the “responsibility for conditions of employment” and “maintaining conditions for high quality nursing care. Nurses are placing their ethics on the line when they are faced with working conditions that are not safe. Placing patients In this danger is unfair and these practices must change in the healthcare system. The nursing shortage is creating a risk for patient safety and making hospitals a dangerous and unsatisfactory place to be a patient. A eating factor in risking patient safety is to have a high nurse-to-patient ratio. Hospitals must have policies and guidelines for nurse-to-patient ratios, but the policies are constantly changing to compensate for the shortage.
As Clark, Leady, Drain, and Goldenberg (2012) report in “State Nursing Shortages and Patient Satisfaction,” complications specifically connected to nurse-to- patient ratios include postoperative respiratory and cardiac complications, increased risk for pulmonary failure, reintegration, and infection complications leading to 39 percent increased length of stay and 32 percent increased source usage among intensive care units. The increased patient assignments for nurses result in more doctor’s orders to complete, more assessments, and less time with patients.
The risk of not completing a doctor’s order is high and therefore, completed later and resulting in longer hospital time for the patient. Assessments and time spent with patients are shorter and nurses are missing critical changes that lead to poor outcomes for the patients. Surveys show that 93 percent of hospital nurses report major problems with having enough time to maintain patient safety, detect implications early, and collaborate with other team members (Chewer & Clamor, 2011). Patients begin to feel less satisfaction with their care and nurse.
Units with high nurse-to-patient ratios have lower rated quality of care (Clark et al. , 2012). Hospitals rate their quality of care based on patients’ satisfaction surveys, this is a key indicator that a hospital is in need of nurses. An important role of any nurse is to educate patients about their health. Nurses are cutting this precious communication with their patients far too short. Many patients risk going home under prepared and they soon return o the emergency room for something that is preventable but not fully aware on how to prevent complications. Holism is the nursing model of care.
If communication is at a minimum, then understanding the full picture of the patient is lost and holism care in incomplete. Nursing schools, hospitals and the government from state to federal levels are all working together to help ease the nursing shortage crisis and change the image of nursing from a negative to a positive and respectful profession. As these three groups collaborate to fight the crisis, the negative impacts of the nursing shortage ill begin to disappear. The government is helping nursing schools by providing grants that will supplement faculty pay so that schools do not have to compete with hospitals for qualified nurses.
As a result, more nursing faculty will provide an increase of available slots for nursing applicants to begin their nursing program with a shorter waiting period. Applicants will also be less likely to turn away from nursing programs because they will be able to begin their education sooner. Hospitals are offering tuition reimbursement programs, paying for nursing books for current employees homo wish to continue their education, but they have to be willing to sign a contract. Nursing students who have never experienced hospitals are eased into the workforce with bonuses and paid nursing citizenship.
With this program, student nurses are learning and training while overcoming the fears of beginning a career in a foreign area. This helps to maintain nurses and build a stable and constant nursing staff without a high volume of nurse turnover. The key to overcoming the shortage is to train more students in nursing by creating more nursing faculty. These programs are still in the early tagged. More legislation at a state level is in need needed to address the severity of the shortage and specifics to individual state situations.
Within a few years, a steady increase of graduate nurses entering the workforce will begin to show. The question is will it be enough to keep up with the volume of baby boomers scheduled to retire? Much collaboration and team effort is created to draw potential applicants to the profession of nursing starting on high school campuses and throughout college campuses. Programs are in creation to streamline the time it takes to get through nursing school so that he new graduates can enter hospitals at a faster rate.