No Nursing Shortage At The Present Time - page 7

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... Read More

  1. by   Stephalump
    My peers and I who went directly into full-time college after high school graduated right in time for the economy to crash. We're full of debt and degrees in Psychology, English, Theatre, and French. At one time just HAVING a degree was enough to get some sort of job, regardless of your major Now...not so much.

    Our school district has a thriving vocational program on its own campus. You can get your cosmetology license, work with airlines, early education centers, you can become a mechanic or welder, or become a certified medical assistant. But who would encourage a good student to take these paths? Looking back, I wish someone would've directed me there. Odds are, it would've been a temporary path, but I would've had a skill/verification to work with while I navigated my way to figuring out who I was and what I wanted, instead of wasting my mother's money studying psychology, theatre, and philosophy.

    My husband started working as a skilled tradesman and was making 6 figures when he was 20 years old, and he only has his GED.

    I already know I'll be encouraging my children in a different way as they get older. I'm not against education, even just for personal enrichment, but when my husband was laid off in 2009 and we didn't have a roof over our heads, my random education did us no good. When we finally recovered financially, it wasn't because of my random education. It was because of his skills. Had I even had an MA certification, it could've done me far more good.
  2. by   TheCommuter
    Quote from Stephalump
    But who would encourage a good student to take these paths? Looking back, I wish someone would've directed me there.
    I was a good high school student who graduated with a 3.5 GPA in a college prep track with a couple of honors/AP courses. Although I had been accepted to three regional state universities, my parents refused to cosign any student loans or provide any financial information for the FAFSA. My parents have no education beyond high school and saw no value in me attending university.

    I ended up not attending college immediately after high school. Instead, I worked a string of dead-end retail jobs and a couple of direct care staff positions for two years. At age 20, I was hired at a paper factory and toiled there for three years while saving almost every penny. At age 23, I took the plunge and quit the factory job to attend a 12-month LVN program full time. After a few years of working as an LVN I earned my RN license.

    I'm now 31 years old, and while I am not rich, I am financially comfortable. I have minimal student loan debt, two older vehicles that I own outright, a modest house with a tiny mortgage of less than $400 per month, and plenty of money left over after the bills are paid.

    For the longest time I resented my parents for refusing to help me with my goal of attending the university. However, everything happens for a reason, and it was a blessing in disguise because I am not saddled with intractable student loan debt and a lite humanities degree.
  3. by   tothepointeLVN
    Quote from TheCommuter
    Exactly. In a nutshell, this is called wage deflation, where the nursing pay rates actually remain stagnant or decrease even though the cost of living is increasing. Since nurses have become a dime a dozen during these past few years, companies can get away with paying less.
    Yep nothing like being flattered when recruiters are calling you for job and then finding out they'd like to pay you less not more than you are currently getting paid. Talk about a hard sell but someone must be biting.
  4. by   tothepointeLVN
    Quote from TheCommuter
    2. As recently as a generation ago, students were tracked into educational pathways based on their test scores and career aspirations. High schools once had vocational paths where students who became disengaged with regular courses could train to become welders, chefs, drafters, auto mechanics, computer office clerks, cosmetologists, manicurists, nursing assistants, and even LPNs. Vocational tracks have mostly disappeared from high schools, and these disengaged students are now forced to sit in college-prep high school courses.
    Y'know when I left NZ they had a pretty good way of handling high school similar to he above. In fifth form (10th grade/sophomore) you sat for your school certificate which was roughly equivalent to your GED. After that you were free to leave high school (provided you were 16 which was the age of adulthood) or you were eligible to enter some trade schools. If you took one more year and sat for your sixth form certificate you were eligible to enter into a polytechnic which included nursing and IT etc. If you stayed for the final year you took university entrance.

    There was also a second way of getting into university if you were 20+ and had 2 years of full time work experience in any field you could gain provisional entrance to the university where you were on probation for the first semester. If you passed your classes you were a regular student.
  5. by   tothepointeLVN
    Quote from TheCommuter
    For the longest time I resented my parents for refusing to help me with my goal of attending the university. However, everything happens for a reason, and it was a blessing in disguise because I am not saddled with intractable student loan debt and a lite humanities degree.
    Even if they did support you it doesn't mean it would have turned out any better. My parents placed too much value on a university education because neither of them had one. I applied for law school and was barely accepted my mother sent in my deposit check and made the decision for me. I was miserable and out of my league. I had wanted to take fashion design courses (something I did once moving to the US) but my dad sneered at me asking "What are you going to do sew clothes in a factory?" The irony is my father had gone through an apprenticeship when he was 14 to become an aircraft mechanic something that would have kept him in a better lifestyle had he kept with it instead of always trying to chase that white collar dream.
  6. by   nursel56
    Quote from lovedijah
    I don't mean to be evil, but it seems like some people want nursing schools to put a big fat blinking sign outside the door that says, "Warning. You may pay us 50,000 for this education and find yourself without a job. Proceed with caution". :redlight: Then you will probably have people who say, "Oh I came in the back door. I didn't see the sign. This is so unfair". Nurses, it's OK to use critical thinking when not in uniform.
    If it seems that way to you, perhaps it's because the belief that there is a nursing shortage is deeply ingrained in the culture and has been for decades. For the most part, the institutions who have deep pockets and the ear of popular media have something to lose by telling the truth about the situation for new grads. We started noticing this trend on allnurses around 4 years ago and it is just now slowly making it's way into the public discourse among academics and researchers, and in trade publications geared toward the healthcare education industry. The vast majority of the public and probably most people just now starting to think about nursing as a career still believes there is a shortage.

    I can't really speculate about the large number of unemployed nurses who aren't willing to make sacrifices to find a job that you mentioned, because I'm not seeing it here. Maybe they just don't post on nursing message boards.

    If everyone who posts here were carrying a neon sign saying "there is no nursing shortage" it would still be a very tiny blip on the screen compared to what the average prospective student hears from both the business and academic power brokers. Thanks for giving us permission to use critical thinking when not in uniform, though. I was just about to run across the room with scissors in my hand.
    Last edit by nursel56 on Jul 5, '12 : Reason: spelling!
  7. by   jamie.glaze
    Quote from netglow
    Yes and the really skilled trades there is huge demand. The US is lacking in truly skilled trades people. In the Chicago area, we have been flooded as of the last few years with Polish/Russian immigrants.

    The entire family comes, lots are trades people. They stay within their own cultural network and when I shop I see them dropping huge cash on luxe items (it absolutely amazes me in this economy). They often pay in cash. There are more and more ads for healthcare positions requiring fluent Polish/Russian - not because the patients don't speak English (they all do fluently), it's because they keep with their own community. Polish physicians are often able to make some big bucks and remain independent of the big hospital networks due to their exclusive marketability.

    When I worked for a private practice a few years back, often payment of thousands was in cash from these folks. Yup the IRS never sees a penny from some I suspect. Funny thing though, the doc I worked for had Polish parents, but he was as American as they come himself - didn't speak a word of Polish. We laughed all the time at how we got so much biz just because of his last name.
    I can back that up - my significant other's family came to NYC from Russia (well, Belarus) in 1980, when he was two. They are very amazing at cultural networks. If you have a problem my eventually-to-be mother in law can find you a Russian to fix it. By tomorrow. LOL - I now find myself, after taking four years of seemingly useless AP German in high school (I can still generally hold a conversation, but understand more than I can speak anymore) very much struggling my way through learning the Russian language, because otherwise I end up sitting outside the circle while they blab away in Russian. They all speak english, they just prefer their language. Maybe it will work to my advantage eventually in a stiuation like you describe lol.
  8. by   koi310
    Looking at the number of banner ads for nursing programs on this site, you'd never guess there *wasn't* a nursing shortage lol.

    But seriously, even people in healthcare thought healthcare was "rescession-proof" until when...?
  9. by   DizzyLizzyNurse
    Quote from koi310
    Looking at the number of banner ads for nursing programs on this site, you'd never guess there *wasn't* a nursing shortage lol.
    I know right? I was thinking this the other day.
  10. by   BennyRNCA
    Hot off the presses, well, kind of, it's recent in the last couple of months, this article was taken from another thread.

    Nursing Shortage Is OVER Until The Retirement Glut Hits: Businessweek article By Nicole Ostrow on March 22, 2012

    Nursing Shortage Is Over in U.S. Until Retirement Glut Hits - Businessweek

    A nursing shortage in the U.S. that led to a decade-long push for new hires and more graduates in the field is over, at least until 2020 when a glut of retirees will leave a new gap to fill, researchers said.

    The number of full-time nurses grew by about 386,000 from 2005 to 2010 and about a third of the growth occurred as unemployment rose to a high of 10 percent during that period, according to a report published in the New England Journal of Medicine.
    The increase in the nursing workforce from 2005 to 2010 was the largest of any five-year period during the last 40 years, the authors said. Hospitals began experiencing a shortage of nurses in 1998, according to the American Hospital Association in 2002.
    “It’s really been a long-standing shortage,” Douglas Staiger, the study author and a professor of economics at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, said in a March 19 telephone interview. “Probably for the first time in memory there were actually reports of nurses having difficulty finding jobs and reports from hospitals of almost a glut of nurses.”
    In the early part of this century, many registered nurses were leaving the profession saying they were overworked, underpaid and unable to provide good patient care, according to a 2002 report in the New England Journal of Medicine. Hospitals responded by encouraging people to become nurses by offering more benefits, signing bonuses, scholarships and tuition reimbursement.
    Graduates Double

    Those efforts paid off as the number of people who graduated from entry-level baccalaureate nursing programs more than doubled to 161,540 in 2010 from 72,986 in 2000, according to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing based in Washington.
    The gains continued unabated even as the recession began in 2007 as nurses who had left the work force or were employed part-time returned to full-time work to shore up family finances, said Staiger.
    As the economy improves, and the mostly married, female workforce quits, reduces working hours to part time or reaches retirement age, a shortage of nurses is expected again. The renewed need for nurses will hit just as demand for health care increases as more Americans gain medical insurance under provisions of the U.S. health-care law that goes into effect in 2014, Staiger said.

    “We had suspected that the supply of nurses is counter cyclical, when the economy goes down, nurses work more, pile back into work in part because the jobs are there,” he said.“The concern was this was a temporary surge into the labor market, a bubble, and as soon as the economy recovered, a lot of nurses would exit and we would be back and the shortage would emerge.
    Bigger Shortage

    “Going ahead into 2020 and beyond, there are concerns that the kind of shortages we’ve had will be larger than what we’ve seen,” Staiger said.
    The nursing workforce is now expected to grow about 109,000 full-time positions from 2010 to 2015, as the economy improves and by 227,000 if the economic downturn persists, the authors said.

    The authors used data from a workforce model to compare the U.S. unemployment rate with the difference between the actual size of the nurse workforce and the model’s expected size over 40 years. They were then able to project what effect the recession had on the workforce in 2005 and 2010 and what effects an improving economy would have beyond 2010.
    Changing Job Market

    They found that from 2010 and 2015, 118,000 nurses will stop working full time as the economy grows.
    “The nursing shortage is likely to re-emerge and nursing is going to continue to be a good occupation choice for young people,” Staiger said.
    The current median age of nurses is 46 years, while the largest group is in their 50s, according American Association of Colleges of Nursing.
    Polly Bednash, chief executive officer of the group, said she’s worried the report will lead policy makers to think they don’t need to invest in the nursing field.

    “We need to put all the support we can into keeping the pipeline robust,” she said in a March 19 telephone interview.
  11. by   kcmylorn
    Since the question was put to me earlier in this thread- if I could retire would I?

    No, I would not retire, but I would go into something else more enjoyable. I like my paycheck and social security of $2,000/month doesn't go very far. I would like to be in the financial situation where I could start"moving forward" to get that position. and get the h*** out of nursing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Last edit by kcmylorn on Jul 5, '12
  12. by   Not_A_Hat_Person
    Quote from HM-8404
    This is a part of the reason the trades pay so well now. Fewer people willing to be become plumbers, electricians, etc and the pay keeps rising, when people flood a certain job market such as nursing or computer programming the pay falls, or does not keep up with inflation.
    I'm from Boston, where the trades pay extremely well because they are essentially closed shops. To work on any government-funded projects, and most privately-funded ones, you have to belong to the union. To join the union, you have to know someone, preferably as a relative. Even holding a coveted union card doesn't guarantee a job if you don't make, and keep, the right connections.
  13. by   MrsStudentNurse
    We are barely seeing the boomers retire at this point. Give it 5-10 years and between nurses at retirement age and general population the shortage that the experts have been preaching will be full blown.