No Nursing Shortage At The Present Time - page 2

by TheCommuter Asst. Admin

69,142 Views | 340 Comments

I am assured that some of you are reading this and saying to yourselves, "Duh! This topic is old hat. We already know there's a glut of nurses in many parts of the country, so why are you writing about this?" Here is my reason... Read More


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    Thirty-six percent of nursing graduates in the class of 2011 had not secured positions as registered nurses (RNs) as of last fall, according to a survey conducted by the National Student Nurses' Association in September (Griswold, 2012). Of course, some states are afflicted with a worse glut of nurses than others. More than four out of ten (43 percent) of California nurses, who were newly licensed as registered nurses in the previous 18 months, say they could not find a job, according to a recent survey paid for by the California Institute for Nursing & Health Care (CVBT, 2012).
    So what is the ultimate fate of those 36% (or 43% in CA) of RN's who have been unable to find nursing jobs for a year or more? Conventional nursing wisdom says that new nurses have a "golden year" after graduation in which to find jobs or risk being unemployable as RN's. Could it be that more than one-third (or apparently more than 40% in some areas) of nursing students are essentially out of luck in terms of their career choice? If so, given that the actual cost to train a new RN generally significantly exceeds the tuition and fees paid by the student, we are are squandering a huge amount of money. That however pales in comparison to the staggering waste of human potential such a scenario represents.

    What will these "non-practicing" RN's do in the long run if a career in nursing is no longer open to them? Can it truly be the case with such large - and growing - numbers of trained but unemployed RN's out there, that there is truly a nursing shortage looming? Are we as a country willing to accept a "lost generation" of unemployable nurses?
    silenced, EhKim86, anotherone, and 5 others like this.
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    When a person enters nursing school and graduates at the 'wrong time' (when the cycle reaches saturation and there are few nursing jobs for the number of applicants) those who can't find jobs are in a terrible situation: their skills decay, newer grads with fresher skills are employed and the graduate with no experience and a 2 year-old license becomes less and less employable.

    There are ways to avoid this situation, and to overcome it if it's happened to you.

    First, if you're considering a job in nursing, read Commuter's advice again... and again. I can hear you saying, "But, it's my DREAM job!" Not to be cynical, but unless you've worked the job, you have no idea if it is--or isn't--your 'dream job'. Read some of the posts from employed nurses who graduated a few months ago or a year or two ago. Many are happy, but from the sounds of it, many more are stressed, overburdened, and scared to death of making a mistake leading to a health crisis in a patient, or leading to them being fired or losing their license.

    If you're in nursing school, make every clinical rotation an opportunity to job seek. Go in early or stay late and talk to the unit director or staff about vacancies. Be the best nursing student you can be--be helpful and anxious to help the nurses; ask to assist or observe. Don't hide out in the break room writing care plans--you'll never win points that way. Be visible and be competent.

    If you're a new grad without a job, put as much effort into finding a job as you did passing the NCLEX or getting through nursing school. Make it your priority. Don't blindly send out 100 resumes via email every day (you might as well be blindfolded, spun around three times and told to throw a touchdown pass). Tailor your resume and cover letter to each specific job (easily done with even primitive word processing programs) and apply to each job as if it WERE your dream job, and that you're qualified for this particular job! Network, talk to other grads, your nursing school director and instructors. Find out what jobs are available and get introductions. Many jobs are not posted--they are found 'word of mouth'.

    If it's been a year or more since you graduated and still haven't found a job, do something drastic. Hire an employment coach, have your resume reviewed and edited by an expert. Physically go to employers with hard-copy resumes in hand; politely ask for 5 minutes of a manager's time. (You'll be refused 9 out of 10 times, but the one time may pay off.) Take a refresher course (usually through a community college or some hospitals offer them), this makes you competitive with the new crop of graduating nurses, and gives you opportunities to network and meet managers. Find an organization where you can volunteer in health care. Get a job as a nurses' aid. Tell yourself you'll make one, really intense, last-ditch effort to find a job--then focus on that for your predetermined amount of time. If you haven't found that job in three months or a year, consider (gasp!) moving on.

    If you're a grad with no experience and no prospects for a job, don't believe that a graduate degree in advanced practice nursing (incurring even more tuition debt) will make you more employable. It may be even less likely you'll find a job--employers will see you never had experience, so would most likely hire someone WITH experience (those programs are specifically designed to build on previous knowledge and experience, so you won't have one of the critical building blocks to be successful).

    There are exceptions to my advice, above (or to any advice you may get from other sources). But, by all means be realistic.
    andrew.youv, silenced, ziggy787, and 19 others like this.
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    I am constantly telling fellow students in my ADN program that there IS NO SHORTAGE!! As an LPN I've watched the job postings go from pages and pages to a few over the last 5 years. Of course, they insist there is...'it's all over the news'..blah blah blah. Told them go on line and do a search for RN's..very few jobs and those that are there want A) EXPERIENCE B) a BSN or C)both a BSN and experience.

    I recently saw on our local news that a wealthy couple gave millions to 'address nursing shortage'...ahhhh! Seriously?! Their idea is sponsering doctoral programs so that more nurses can earn their degrees so that they can teach so then more people will be able to get into the nursing programs.

    "The couple established the Jonas Center for Nursing Excellence, which now supports 59 nursing doctoral students at nearly two dozen schools. The program will be expanding this fall to include 200 scholars across all 50 states.
    Tens of thousands of people are turned away from nursing programs each year due to a shortage in faculty, Barbara explained. Nurses earning doctoral degrees will be able to fill the shortage of teachers, and will also be able to do advanced clinical work."


    Read more:
    Couple gives millions to address nursing shortage - GreenwichTime
    CNA1991 likes this.
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    Excellent advice, Patti_RN!!!!
    silenced, libby11, and Esme12 like this.
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    California has sunshine and in relativity high wages. It's too tempting for people to move here with their brand new license. They'll come on here and ask advice, get it but move anyways.

    It's too tempting when your unemployed to listen to someone who tells you nursing is a guaranteed job with a great wage and enroll yourself in school asap. Why would they listen to us. We are telling them their sure thing is not so and sending them back to their original fate. I can see why they would choose fake optimism instead of realistic cynicism.

    I was midway through school when the banks started to crumple and my future crumbled before my eyes. I got a job straight away but it was bottom of the barrel stuff in my eyes but compared to my cohort who were getting the empty barrel it was ok.

    In the end where every career path seems iffy its easy to understand why people would follow optimism no matter how unrealistic.
    Lovely_RN, CNA1991, Patti_RN, and 2 others like this.
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    Now...with the passing of "obamacare" does one think the demand for nurses to increase?

    i "was" a nursing student, but i switched for cardiac sonograpgher ...i hope im doing right thing
    whichone'spink and CNA1991 like this.
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    Thanks Commuter.......I have been posting that there is NO nursing shortage for quite sometime now. Yes the nursing "shortages" and "surpluses" are cyclical but this one is different. The plethora of graduates far exceeds need. Part of the figures for the "Nursing Shortage" was calculated on the model of mandatory staffing laws that was going to "pass" nation wide like the one in CA. That failed to happen for the economic crisis derailed all attempts for there suddenly was more important matters a foot!

    Now with a bad economy, one like the Great Depression, has many flocking to the "recession proof" nursing profession. Nurses returned to the bedside becasue their husbands can't find work......many can't retire becasue we lost our retirement funds that we were forced to place our money into.......crashed. (now I know why my grandfather didn't trust banks). Hospitals are now in the drivers seat and they won't give it up easily.

    Yes this too shall pass....but I don't ever think it will be the same as in the past where nurses named their price, hours and benefits. It will moderate, but with the push by the acedemics to perpetuate the lies and continue to collect tuitions, ignoring the saturated market to line their own pockets, but the face of nursing has been changed at least until after 2020.
    silenced, Mom To 4, Tragically Hip, and 4 others like this.
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    Unfortunately I think also we are going to find that all those new grads that don't get experience will not add to the labor pool for nursing so in a few years the number of employable nurses will be much less than the number of licensed nurses.
    CNA1991 and Burlshoe114 like this.
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    needless to say, it saddens me to read this type of articles because it's a story that repeats itself over and over all through the states, but somehow the nursing schools keep producing more nurses like a factory assembly while only a few might find work as rn's others end up paying student loans without any gratification. having said that, the only solution will come when all of the "baby boomers" begin to retire of old age sad but true, it's a sign of the times for nursing.
    silenced and CNA1991 like this.
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    There isn't a shortage of nurse bodies in my area, just nurses who want to work weekends, evenings and nights. New grads don't want to start off with small part time positions and pick up extra shifts. Instead they cherry pick what day shifts they can leaving us meanies to keep working extra nights, evenings and weekends.

    I have been guilted into working every long weekend this year. Yes, it's made enough money to pay off my mortgage five years early but I'm fed up of calling our casuals to be told "I don't work shift or weekends".
    silenced, RN34TX, TiddlDwink, and 3 others like this.


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