What Nursing Shortage?

  1. I've not subscribed to this nursing shortage at all. I believe there are plenty of nurses out there. The problem is that many are leaving the profession for reasons we are all well aware of. It would seem that nurses are in a position to "call the shots" in the midst of this supply and demand crisis. But that does not appear to be the case. I would return to nursing if I could find a true part-time job with part-time hours. What I have encountered is extreme rigidity and inability to accomodate a nurses' request to work a parttime schedule. I believe there are many nurses who would return to nursing on a part-time basis to avoid the full-time hassles of the profession. That is why I believe the term "nursing shortage" is a crock. Perhaps it is the strategy of administrators to demonstrate the need for more unlicensed personnel to take over nursing gaps to increase their pocketbooks. What do you think?
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  2. 29 Comments

  3. by   Q.
    I agree. There are enough licensed nurses in America (last figure was 2.7 million) to staff. The problem is they don't. Why?

    That is why I believe recruitment of foreign nurses, recruitment of nursing students, recruitment period will not solve the problem. Why recruit more nursing students when you don't have enough nursing faculty to begin with?
  4. by   wv_nurse 2003
    I agree completely--there are nurses, they just aren't working in the nursing field any more!

    I have found that while a few years ago (when I quit hospital nursing for a much more family-friendly schedule) part-time was mis-nomer ---{part time, BUT hey we had to schedule you full time hours during the summer and over every major holiday}

    These days the hospitals near me, at least, seem to be a bit more accomidating with positions that are per diem for example. You tell them, I can only work Mon-Tues-Thursday day shift --period--
    Maybe its because they are desperate and willing to "do what they have to" just to get bodies.
  5. by   pickledpepperRN
  6. by   Daisy
    I agree that there really is not a nursing shortage. There are plenty of nurses out there. Why are they not working in the hospitals? Does it have anything to do with the working conditions? How about some of the lousy pay? Maybe more hospitals and health care facilities should look at flexible scheduling,salaries, and some real retention efforts to get people to stay. What happened to our profession that it has come to this?
  7. by   Going80INA55
    Yep, I agree as well. Plenty of nurses out there.

    A few years back when they first started crying about it many nurses came back out of "retirement" and took refresher courses, and then we have this lovely economy also pushing nurses back into the professtion.

    I dont work bedside nursing anymore why should I? I can make almost the same amount of money, with the same benefits sitting at my desk with no stress.
  8. by   sjoe
    As has been amply discussed on numerous threads here, there IS no nursing shortage.

    There IS a shortage of tolerable places to work and certainly a shortage of competent management. Of course the present bunch of losers running hospitals would rather pretend that there is an actual numerical shortage of nurses overall (that way this can be used as an excuse that people don't want to work for them), than accept the simple fact that the shortage exists only in their particular dysfunctional facilities (which just happens to be MOST of them).

    And they don't want any new hires to say that the emperor (empress) has no clothes, so they are most reluctant to hire people they think might stand up to them, or have enough experience to see the problems immediately and move to change things. Or, even worse, actually TRAIN the specialty nurses they need (ER, OR, ICU). Or improve the working conditions, because that would be admitting that they were deficient in the first place.

    Heads in the sand (or another dark place).
    Last edit by sjoe on Feb 25, '03
  9. by   spineCNOR
    Well stated, sjoe!

    It seems that many administrators would prefer to look anywhere but at themselves. For example, my workplace has a horrendous turnover rate, but the management focuses on recruitment, and is always excited when they get a new hire. However, there is a perpetual staff shortage because people leave faster than they can be hired and trained. There has been no attention (that I am aware of) on recruitment.
  10. by   mattsmom81
    Originally posted by sjoe
    As has been amply discussed on numerous threads here, there IS no nursing shortage.

    There IS a shortage of tolerable places to work and certainly a shortage of competent management. Of course the present bunch of losers running hospitals would rather pretend that there is an actual numerical shortage of nurses overall (that way this can be used as an excuse that people don't want to work for them), than accept the simple fact that the shortage exists only in their particular dysfunctional facilities (which just happens to be MOST of them).

    And they don't want any new hires to say that the emperor (empress) has no clothes, so they are most reluctant to hire people they think might stand up to them, or have enough experience to see the problems immediately and move to change things. Or, even worse, actually TRAIN the specialty nurses they need (ER, OR, ICU). Or improve the working conditions, because that would be admitting that they were deficient in the first place.

    Heads in the sand (or another dark place).

    ITA SJoe! :roll
  11. by   pickledpepperRN
    [QUOTE]Originally posted by sjoe
    [B]As has been amply discussed on numerous threads here, there IS no nursing shortage.

    There IS a shortage of tolerable places to work and certainly a shortage of competent management. Of course the present bunch of losers running hospitals would rather pretend that there is an actual numerical shortage of nurses overall ....

    Remember 'locus of control'?
    How can they be so "powerless" yet arrogant similtaneously?

    I love the "empress has no clothes". quote too!
  12. by   Tweety
    sjoe says it well.

    However, we have per diem positions at our hospital where the part-timers make out any schedule they want. I know a woman who works only one 12-hour shift a week. Another works three 4-hour shifts, another 4 8-hour shifts, one 2 12-hour shifts a week, on and on. Is this unusual? I find our hospital extremely accommodating to part-timers.
  13. by   mattsmom81
    3rd shift guy, management is accomodating because these are their 'fillers' for vacation and short staff times.

    PRN, PT (or better yet agency) is the best if one can do without benes....as one can negotiate a sane work schedule. Can't blame nurses for wanting some sanity.

    If you feel management is too accepting of low work hours for these folks, perhaps you need to push for commitment policies for part timers...ie so many shifts/weekends per month. That is common in my parts.

    But if another facility is more accomodating, then you may lose them altogether.

    Now I HAVE felt very angry as FT staff when I've seen new hire FT'ers negotiate a cushy weekday only schedule while us oldtimers get stuck working every weekend. A loud outcry and several resignations later, nothing had changed.. and resulted in me going PRN forevermore.
  14. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Originally posted by 3rdShiftGuy
    sjoe says it well.

    However, we have per diem positions at our hospital where the part-timers make out any schedule they want. I know a woman who works only one 12-hour shift a week. Another works three 4-hour shifts, another 4 8-hour shifts, one 2 12-hour shifts a week, on and on. Is this unusual? I find our hospital extremely accommodating to part-timers.
    ......and??? I am sorry; I mean no personal disrespect here but I am gonna address this nonetheless. Just what is your problem with that? See, I get burned up when I hear "regulars" complain like that (and I used to be one). You need to remember something here; we do a lot of favors for "regular" staffers, all w/o bennies. (except our differential, I admit).

    We don't get guaranteed hours. NO vacation time paid for. No paid sick time. No medical bennies. No tuition assistance. So, I don't see why you are complaining. If you want such a schedule, you always have the option to go perdiem like I AM Or quit your complaining. WE take the shifts no one else will do. So if I make out my schedule to MY convenience, filling in holes left by regulars who get first crack at it, it is my right to. I have no guarantee from my workplace other than that they will call when they need me. I am the first called off for low-census, too. Making out a schedule that works for me is the plus side to be oncall, casual or perdiem, so you need to deal with that and respect it. I COVER YOUR VACATIONS AND ''ME" TIME remember.

    And if it seems management is bending over backward to please us, don't believe it. They are just trying to put out fires and fill in holes that regulars cannot or will not fill. (and that management does not want to fill, either). So it's a necessary evil, I suppose. I am sorry this got long. and Again, no disrespect intended, 3rd shift. Just giving a "perdiem" POV here.
    Last edit by SmilingBluEyes on Feb 26, '03

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