Nursing Shortage

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorUniversity, Bachelor's September 2001

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Nursing Issue Historically, the nursing profession was perceived as an excellent choice for persons seeking, ?a challenging, and flexible, and relatively well-paying career? (RN, 98). However, over the past decade enrolment into the profession has steadily declined. One must, therefore, ask why nursing has lost its appeal? Research suggests that several factors have contributed to declining enrolment, increased job dissatisfaction, and competition with other career opportunities. These factors include: work demands increasing and leading to burnout, increased complexity of work, not having enough time. Certainly in the past nursing, as portrayed by the media was not promising as it reflected casual or part-time work, and downsizing. With this in mind, we will discuss the issue of nursing shortages, two clinical examples highlighting the issue, and general recommendations.

Canada today is in the midst of a serious shortage of nurses that will continue to worsen in years to come.

A comprehensive study published in 1998 by the Canadian Nurse Association predicts a shortage of 59000 to 113000 nurses by the year 2011; this however is with the exception of Québec who predicts a shortage of 11000 nurses between the years 2001 to 2015. At the same time while the demand continues to rise, fewer individuals are pursuing the nursing profession. Furthermore, the nursing workforce continues to grow older, ?in 1998 57966 nurses were over 50 years, compared with 48838 in 1993 a 19% increase? (Spurgon, BMJ). This issue in particular was chosen because of its relevance within the institution, as well as worldwide. After asking several nurse what they perceived to be the greatest issue, they all stated: lack of staffing as their primary response. Furthermore, I was able to observe the effects of nursing shortage as I had been working on the unit. After having...

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