Is there REALLY a nursing shortage?

  1. This is an interesting article guys/gals...

    Here's the letter I wrote to the President, Vice-President, U.S. Congress Rep. and Senator:

    "I'm an R.N. and I recently started working as an agency nurse because the pay is so much better and the hours are very flexible. The hospital system in my area that uses most of the agency nurses is in the process of hiring foreign labor to cut costs and fill positions. I read an article, "Is there REALLY a nursing shortage?" by Richard Armstrong and what he said really concerned me. It is true that American jobs are going overseas and there are over 8 million Americans out of work. People who go to school for certain professions do not have jobs when they graduate. Where is the AMERICAN DREAM going??? I realize our country is a melting pot and all, but what about OUR JOBS for US HERE???!!!

    Please abolish the H-1B program. Americans need to demand that employers not be allowed to replace American workers with foreigners... I'm finally not living paycheck to paycheck as a nurse and I'm finally able to get ahead... But now there is this big black cloud looming over my head and it's full of foreign nurses trying to get out of THEIR country to take MY job. Why are you letting this happen to your fellow Americans???

    Sincerely,

    Marie L. Schultz
    Shreveport, Louisiana"

    I don't know if it will help or not, but I figured it was worth a try. Nurses from India, Africa and Thailand (among others) are coming to the Shreveport area to fill gaps of this so-called nursing shortage so that the hospital system I work at won't have to use agency nurses. Instead of paying American nurses better... this is what is happening. Nice. Very nice.

    Do you see this happening where YOU are??? I just started working agency and that's all I'm doing right now. I love it. I just started April 19th, 2004 and here it is... not one month later and 15 foreigners are starting in the next week or so as a "pilot" for the other 3 hospitals of this hospital chain. This hospital chain uses most agency nurses here in Shreveport. They're trying to get rid of agency nurses all together by using these other nurses.

    Again I ask: Do you see this happening where YOU are???

    Thanks in advance. :angryfire
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  2. 262 Comments

  3. by   Marie0304
    http://www.hireamericancitizens.org/nusing000.html

    (that's the article about so-called nursing shortage)
  4. by   suzanne4
    Quote from Marie030473
    This is an interesting article guys/gals...

    Here's the letter I wrote to the President, Vice-President, U.S. Congress Rep. and Senator:

    "I'm an R.N. and I recently started working as an agency nurse because the pay is so much better and the hours are very flexible. The hospital system in my area that uses most of the agency nurses is in the process of hiring foreign labor to cut costs and fill positions. I read an article, "Is there REALLY a nursing shortage?" by Richard Armstrong and what he said really concerned me. It is true that American jobs are going overseas and there are over 8 million Americans out of work. People who go to school for certain professions do not have jobs when they graduate. Where is the AMERICAN DREAM going??? I realize our country is a melting pot and all, but what about OUR JOBS for US HERE???!!!

    Please abolish the H-1B program. Americans need to demand that employers not be allowed to replace American workers with foreigners... I'm finally not living paycheck to paycheck as a nurse and I'm finally able to get ahead... But now there is this big black cloud looming over my head and it's full of foreign nurses trying to get out of THEIR country to take MY job. Why are you letting this happen to your fellow Americans???

    Sincerely,

    Marie L. Schultz
    Shreveport, Louisiana"

    I don't know if it will help or not, but I figured it was worth a try. Nurses from India, Africa and Thailand (among others) are coming to the Shreveport area to fill gaps of this so-called nursing shortage so that the hospital system I work at won't have to use agency nurses. Instead of paying American nurses better... this is what is happening. Nice. Very nice.

    Do you see this happening where YOU are??? I just started working agency and that's all I'm doing right now. I love it. I just started April 19th, 2004 and here it is... not one month later and 15 foreigners are starting in the next week or so as a "pilot" for the other 3 hospitals of this hospital chain. This hospital chain uses most agency nurses here in Shreveport. They're trying to get rid of agency nurses all together by using these other nurses.

    Again I ask: Do you see this happening where YOU are???

    Thanks in advance. :angryfire
    First, I have worked agency for twenty five hyears and have never had a probelm finding work.
    Second, there are no more H1-B visas, the last one was issued in February for an application that was submitted last September. The quota is full for this year, and they don't expect it to open to nurses for next year. The only way that a nurse can come to the US is with a green card, which gives her rights to residency. The hospitals cannot pay cheaper rates to a nurse with a green card. A hospital has the right to fill its staff however it deems necessary. The reason for agency nurses are to fill the gap until a hospital gets their staffing back up, not to give you a higher income. The hospitals are not cutting thier costs, they are filling the positions that they are budgeted for. This has been going on for years. Especially if you are an ICU or Specialty RN that works agency. And for me also with the OR. Even if a hospital hires new nurses, there orieintation is minimum of three months, someone has to work during that time. if it is OR, it can be six months or more. There are always going to be nurses quitting.......and the hospital cannot just decide to bring over a foreign nurse and have them begin work tomorrow, it takes about 18 months in many places for the nurse finally to be in the US working. So these nurses were hired way before you even considered going "agency", as much as 18 months ago. :uhoh21:
  5. by   suzanne4
    Hospitals have stopped using agency all of the time, and they go back to them at some point or another. This has been going on for years. This is a fact, ask your agency. I have 25 years of agency to back up my claims, do you? How many agencies are you signed up with ? You can't expect one hospital chain to always keep you in work, That is not the idea of agency. They cover the hospital until they can get their staffing up, then something opens at another hospital.

    Please get your facts straight before you post.

    p.s. Another word for agency is "staff relief"!!!! that is exactly what it is...
  6. by   Torachan
    Sounds a bit .... hmm what's the word?

    Take a look at some of the posts. There are Pom's wanting to go to Australia and NZ. Aussies and kiwi's keen to go to UK and US. And I'm sure that there are Yanks who want to migrate as well. For a country founded on immigration it is a bit rude to cry that a foreigner (who is qualified and contributes to the economy from day one) takes "your" job. How many jobs do you want? Is America not the land of opportunity and freedom? What car do you drive, tv you watch, microwave you use or did you send those jobs OS?

    Don't be so mean spirited about people wanting to better their lot. I am sure that if the shoe was on the other foot you'd be singing a different tune

    ps I am not America bashing.
  7. by   suzanne4
    I am an American nurse who has emigrated to Thailand.

    But the worst part it when stated that the foreigners are replacing spots at a hospital so that agency shifts are going down..........this always has been going on and always will, same way that there are usually a decrease in agency shifts around August/September because the new grads will be done with orientation, but then vacations start. It is a never ending cycle, at least for the past 25 years. That is why you do not sign up with only one agency to work for only one hospital chain. Agencies are expensive, if you are making good money, just think of how much the agency is billing the hospital. Of course, that is going to be the first place that they are going to cut their expenses, when they safely can.
  8. by   Dixiedi
    Quote from Marie030473
    This is an interesting article guys/gals...

    Here's the letter I wrote to the President, Vice-President, U.S. Congress Rep. and Senator:

    "I'm an R.N. and I recently started working as an agency nurse because the pay is so much better and the hours are very flexible. The hospital system in my area that uses most of the agency nurses is in the process of hiring foreign labor to cut costs and fill positions. I read an article, "Is there REALLY a nursing shortage?" by Richard Armstrong and what he said really concerned me. It is true that American jobs are going overseas and there are over 8 million Americans out of work. People who go to school for certain professions do not have jobs when they graduate. Where is the AMERICAN DREAM going??? I realize our country is a melting pot and all, but what about OUR JOBS for US HERE???!!!

    Please abolish the H-1B program. Americans need to demand that employers not be allowed to replace American workers with foreigners... I'm finally not living paycheck to paycheck as a nurse and I'm finally able to get ahead... But now there is this big black cloud looming over my head and it's full of foreign nurses trying to get out of THEIR country to take MY job. Why are you letting this happen to your fellow Americans???

    Sincerely,

    Marie L. Schultz
    Shreveport, Louisiana"

    I don't know if it will help or not, but I figured it was worth a try. Nurses from India, Africa and Thailand (among others) are coming to the Shreveport area to fill gaps of this so-called nursing shortage so that the hospital system I work at won't have to use agency nurses. Instead of paying American nurses better... this is what is happening. Nice. Very nice.

    Do you see this happening where YOU are??? I just started working agency and that's all I'm doing right now. I love it. I just started April 19th, 2004 and here it is... not one month later and 15 foreigners are starting in the next week or so as a "pilot" for the other 3 hospitals of this hospital chain. This hospital chain uses most agency nurses here in Shreveport. They're trying to get rid of agency nurses all together by using these other nurses.

    Again I ask: Do you see this happening where YOU are???

    Thanks in advance. :angryfire
    Sounds like you are angry that your choice was not well timed. The "best nursing positions change regularly, at least as far as money goes. This year agency work (either home care or LTC/hosp staffing) may provide the best overall take home. Then next year, it's right back to acute care inhouse staffing! There's no way to predict. It just depends on where the nurses go. Face it, we are nomadic in the way we change jobs and that affects need and that affects the pay scale.

    If you are looking for work, my agency sure needs bodies.
  9. by   Marie0304
    Quote from suzanne4
    First, I have worked agency for twenty five hyears and have never had a probelm finding work.
    Second, there are no more H1-B visas, the last one was issued in February for an application that was submitted last September. The quota is full for this year, and they don't expect it to open to nurses for next year. The only way that a nurse can come to the US is with a green card, which gives her rights to residency. The hospitals cannot pay cheaper rates to a nurse with a green card. A hospital has the right to fill its staff however it deems necessary. The reason for agency nurses are to fill the gap until a hospital gets their staffing back up, not to give you a higher income. The hospitals are not cutting thier costs, they are filling the positions that they are budgeted for. This has been going on for years. Especially if you are an ICU or Specialty RN that works agency. And for me also with the OR. Even if a hospital hires new nurses, there orieintation is minimum of three months, someone has to work during that time. if it is OR, it can be six months or more. There are always going to be nurses quitting.......and the hospital cannot just decide to bring over a foreign nurse and have them begin work tomorrow, it takes about 18 months in many places for the nurse finally to be in the US working. So these nurses were hired way before you even considered going "agency", as much as 18 months ago. :uhoh21:
    I think you missed the point of my email. I was asking for opinions/experiences as I am a NEW agency nurse. I realize you can't rely on just ONE agency to allow hours. I realize things will fluctuate. I realize all of that. You missed my whole point in my email/post. My CONCERN was as stated above in the original post. You don't, obviously, live in my area. There aren't too many hospitals here and the ones that DO use agency the MOST are of ONE chain. I can't help but rely on just that one chain. That's how it is and that's what I've chosen. I don't plan to live here for much longer (perhaps a couple of years). I realize WHY hospitals use agency, I realize how much the agency charges the hospitals and I realize it's the prerogative of the hospital to do what it pleases. My whole concern is that jobs are/have been going overseas and oftentimes to places that are NOT free (i.e. China, India) and who pay their workers CHANGE to make things for us here in America so why do we support that and buy so many things from places LIKE China... who has no regard for human life (the government of China). China could nuke us one day and we will have paid them, essentially, to do it. I'm off on a tangent now. Back to nursing: It's all about the almighty dollar... I realize that, too. The hospitals want to save money. The concern I have is not about the people coming here from foreign countries so much as what may happen in the future if it keeps on and on and on. Do you even understand what I was getting at in my first post??? It's just a trend that happened with the computer industry and my concern is/was/will be: what if it happens to nursing?? I was asking for opinions, Suzanne, not to be slapped in the face for asking the question. I don't care what countries they're from so much as the intent (by the hospitals and major corporations who hire them) behind the whole idea of bringing cheaper labor into the U.S.
  10. by   Marie0304
    Quote from suzanne4
    Hospitals have stopped using agency all of the time, and they go back to them at some point or another. This has been going on for years. This is a fact, ask your agency. I have 25 years of agency to back up my claims, do you? How many agencies are you signed up with ? You can't expect one hospital chain to always keep you in work, That is not the idea of agency. They cover the hospital until they can get their staffing up, then something opens at another hospital.

    Please get your facts straight before you post.

    p.s. Another word for agency is "staff relief"!!!! that is exactly what it is...
    There are FOUR... count 'em... FOUR hospitals here in my area that HEAVILY rely on agency nurses... that is who I have to rely on to work (right now... today... and for a couple more years while I live here in this city). That's the facts; another fact: I CHOSE to do agency. I can't sign up to work for several agencies because the monopoly is with this ONE chain. That's how it is. It just so happens that only 1 of the 4 hospitals knows me so when I'm booked at one who does NOT know me, I oftentimes get cancelled. That, AGAIN, was not the point of my email/post. The point was about the hospitals bringing in foreign labor for cheaper cost... which, yes, they have the right to do... but it's upsetting to me if it continues to be a trend and American workers are pushed out of jobs. It may not happen. Who knows? Time will tell. Just because you've been doing this for 25 years doesn't mean that things won't change. I wanted experiences from people... not "please get your facts straight before you post" snotty-ness. Sheesh!
  11. by   Marie0304
    Quote from suzanne4
    I am an American nurse who has emigrated to Thailand.

    But the worst part it when stated that the foreigners are replacing spots at a hospital so that agency shifts are going down..........this always has been going on and always will, same way that there are usually a decrease in agency shifts around August/September because the new grads will be done with orientation, but then vacations start. It is a never ending cycle, at least for the past 25 years. That is why you do not sign up with only one agency to work for only one hospital chain. Agencies are expensive, if you are making good money, just think of how much the agency is billing the hospital. Of course, that is going to be the first place that they are going to cut their expenses, when they safely can.
    This is an INFORMATION GATHERING site to post. You can be so snotty with your replies. Because you keep saying over and over that you've have 25 years' experience. Well, la dee da. Some of us only have... NINE years experience... and some of us haven't worked agency before... like me. I haven't been doing this long enough to notice a trend. It's only been a MONTH for me. And... by the way.. the shifts have not gone down so much here lately... the new nurses are in training... agency is working as usual. If things work out with the new nurses... things "COULD" get bad. I have no idea. Time will tell.
  12. by   Marie0304
    Quote from Torachan
    Sounds a bit .... hmm what's the word?

    Take a look at some of the posts. There are Pom's wanting to go to Australia and NZ. Aussies and kiwi's keen to go to UK and US. And I'm sure that there are Yanks who want to migrate as well. For a country founded on immigration it is a bit rude to cry that a foreigner (who is qualified and contributes to the economy from day one) takes "your" job. How many jobs do you want? Is America not the land of opportunity and freedom? What car do you drive, tv you watch, microwave you use or did you send those jobs OS?

    Don't be so mean spirited about people wanting to better their lot. I am sure that if the shoe was on the other foot you'd be singing a different tune

    ps I am not America bashing.
    Okay... I want ONE job. I don't CARE where the people are from, Torachan. That is SO not the POINT. My point is the drive behind the hospitals doing this. If it continues... WILL we have jobs to spare? The thing is... if, for example, they replace an agency nurse who is filling a gap with a nurse who is willing to except lower pay (than even a staff nurse at the hospital) to simply get out of their country because conditions are so bad...

    Gosh... I don't even know if I can explain myself to suit you. I'm not being mean-spirited. I don't care where they're from. I just care about being able to work. Huge companies and corporations work hard all the time at trying to figure out how to cut costs (they replace jobs all the time with people who work in horrible conditions/for horrible pay; taking away jobs from qualified people who have gotten educations to get paid better-- I think I have a right to be concerned about MY profession in THIS day and age), which, yes, they have every right to do. But when things are made in NOT SO FREE countries like China (who treat their employees like cr+p and don't pay them anything!!!), yes, I have a problem with it. I wish I could buy American all the time to support people here. I don't have anything against buying things made in other countries, but when it comes from a country who is communist, yes... it sorta bothers me. I have a right to my feelings and opinions. I wasn't being mean-spirited, but that's how you interpreted it. It's easy to do that from a mere post when there is no inflection of emotion behind it. But... whatever. Nevermind.


    Again... it's NOT about the people or WHERE they are from. THAT is NOT the ISSUE.
  13. by   Dixiedi
    Quote from Marie030473
    I think you missed the point of my email. .... It's just a trend that happened with the computer industry and my concern is/was/will be: what if it happens to nursing?? I was asking for opinions, Suzanne, not to be slapped in the face for asking the question. I don't care what countries they're from so much as the intent (by the hospitals and major corporations who hire them) behind the whole idea of bringing cheaper labor into the U.S.
    Anyone who believes a hospital HAS to pay all nurses the same thing is not "up" on anything.

    Any business can change their pay grades tomorrow and exempt current employees. Say, the new grad LPN is making 21.00/hr. Hired today, she/he would make 21. Hired tomorrow, he/she could be making 15. There is nothing against the law there.

    This doesn't affect JUST nursing either.... So, they help the nurse come over, pay her/him on the same payscale they've been using for years. This is OK... but what about his/her family? Newbies to the country rarely come alone. They bring the whole family. What about the jobs they will be taking? The regulations can only cover so much, then it fails. That's what we should be worried about. Not the few that come over under a specific program. It's the family that comes with or follows.

    I would like to ask the original post 1 question. Why is it you think the Chinese Gov has no respect for human life?
  14. by   suzanne4
    A green card holder must be paid the same wages as all of the others. They cannot differentiate pay because the green card is permanent citizenship, not a temporary work permit.

    The US was bringing in large numbers of nurses twenty years ago from the Philippines. Did it ever keep any of us from having work? If the nurse is educated with a BS degree, I highly suspect that her family/spouse will have the same educational level. And where did your grandparents come from?
    Most of use have grandparents, at least, that were immigrants..................

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