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No nursing shortage or nursing jobs

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by PinaColada PinaColada (Member)

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AngelicDarkness has 7 years experience and specializes in geriatrics, IV, Nurse management.

365 Posts; 9,190 Profile Views

Is there still really a nursing shortage? Can someone tell me where all of the nursing jobs are? I have a tons of BSN RN friends who have been unemployed for over a year. Forget about new grads :(

I keep hearing this, but it honestly depends on where you look. I couldn't get into a hospital, so I emailed ALL my local LTC/RH and CCAC for positions available. I found one with a RH that was interviewing that day. Even if it isn't the speciality you want to work in, have to start somewhere. Experience looks great on a resume:)

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TheCommuter has 10 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Case mgmt., rehab, (CRRN), LTC & psych.

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Is there still really a nursing shortage?

I'm going to post my standard reply here. In many regions across the U.S., there's absolutely no nursing shortage. There's actually a surplus of too many nurses in some cities and states. Contrary to popular belief, nursing is certainly NOT the recession-proof career pathway that people make it out to be.

During recessions, patients avoid having elective surgeries because they are fearful of taking the time off work that is needed for full recovery, which results in low hospital census on the units that depend on postoperative cases (ortho, med/surg, PACU, SICU, acute rehab, etc.). When hospital census is low, less nurses are needed to keep the floor running.

More people are unemployed during these rough times and, as a result, have lost their health insurance. Uninsured people are definitely not inclined to seek healthcare unless it is an absolute emergency. In addition, medical bills incurred by uninsured patients tend to go unpaid, which means less money for healthcare facilities. The hospitals must absorb the losses.

Part-time nurses, PRN/per diem nurses, and semi-retired nurses accept full-time positions during recessions to keep their households afloat when a breadwinner spouse loses his/her job without notice. Plenty of retired nurses are reactivating their nursing licenses and returning to the nursing workforce due to the high costs of food and fuel, and the effects of depleted retirement funds. Since all of these experienced nurses are returning to the nursing employment market, this means less jobs available for all of the new graduate nurses that are being churned into local job markets every few months.

I must also mention that Medicaid and Medicare reimbursements are lower than ever. This has affected areas of nursing such as acute care, hospice, home health, long term care, rehab, clinics, doctors' offices, and so forth. These low reimbursement rates mean less money available to pay nursing staff.

While this phenomenon might not apply to the town, city, or state in which you live, it is certainly happening in many places across the U.S. The jobs tend to be in places where most people do not desire to live (read: North Dakota), more rural areas, and towns that do not have any nursing schools located within a 100 mile radius. The pay is probably going to be very low due to regional differences in the cost of living. The working conditions might be less than stellar.

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One of the major community colleges in our oversaturated marked just announced they are CLOSING THEIR NURSING SCHOOL:

"We have learned that the hiring of Associate Degree Registered Nurses in many of the area acute care hospitals has significantly reduced in favor of nurses with a Baccalaureate Degree in Nursing. This change has also resulted in a drastic reduction in clinical sites for our nursing students."

https://allnurses.com/co-nursing-programs/ccd-discontinues-adn-565627.html

Well, good for them. It is just awful to take money from people the way so many of these colleges do. The administrators know well that a nursing degree of any kind is worthless if employment is not gained quickly after graduation. No other business will consider someone with only a nursing degree for employment excepting your local coffee shop or Target. This has been going on now since the last part of 2007 across the country. At least this one college has made an ethical decision. I think ALL programs ADN/BSN need to drastically cut back. They can always increase enrollment *should* the market change. There are already many thousands of licensed nurses unemployed who should be given first crack at refresher courses to fill any new openings that should come.

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This topic is so disheartening. I am currently in an ADN program in Delaware just finished my first two semester in rotations. It seems that some of our graduates are getting positions but most are not. Those that have either already worked in the hospital and know someone are getting the nurse externships. When we the students ask what is the job prospects, the instructors are always assuring us that we will get a job. But on every nursing board out here the word seems so different. I am confused and wonder should I just pull out and change my degree plan. After all the books, time and effort may be better spent elsewhere.:confused:

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Delynn118, I really feel for you. But I am glad that you are here and are getting to know about the real situation out there. You are way ahead of your classmates. My advice is to never give thought to what a nursing instructor might advise. Remember, their jobs hang in the balance. They are not working for your future, right?! If you should find another viable avenue at this point, take it. I'd rec the same to a BSN.

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Hi, I am an Indian, and registered as a nurse over here with one year of experience now. Please suggest me the way to get a job in Singapore....PLease suggest

Wrong place to be asking.

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24 Posts; 899 Profile Views

This topic is so disheartening. I am currently in an ADN program in Delaware just finished my first two semester in rotations. It seems that some of our graduates are getting positions but most are not. Those that have either already worked in the hospital and know someone are getting the nurse externships. When we the students ask what is the job prospects, the instructors are always assuring us that we will get a job. But on every nursing board out here the word seems so different. I am confused and wonder should I just pull out and change my degree plan. After all the books, time and effort may be better spent elsewhere.:confused:

There is still time to stop and transfer your credits to a college that will count your nursing credits as free electives. You don't have to feel obligated to continue or limited to your degree. There is still time for change. :) Contact me if you would like to know more.

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24 Posts; 899 Profile Views

I'm going to post my standard reply here. In many regions across the U.S., there's absolutely no nursing shortage. There's actually a surplus of too many nurses in some cities and states. Contrary to popular belief, nursing is certainly NOT the recession-proof career pathway that people make it out to be.

During recessions, patients avoid having elective surgeries because they are fearful of taking the time off work that is needed for full recovery, which results in low hospital census on the units that depend on postoperative cases (ortho, med/surg, PACU, SICU, acute rehab, etc.). When hospital census is low, less nurses are needed to keep the floor running.

More people are unemployed during these rough times and, as a result, have lost their health insurance. Uninsured people are definitely not inclined to seek healthcare unless it is an absolute emergency. In addition, medical bills incurred by uninsured patients tend to go unpaid, which means less money for healthcare facilities. The hospitals must absorb the losses.

Part-time nurses, PRN/per diem nurses, and semi-retired nurses accept full-time positions during recessions to keep their households afloat when a breadwinner spouse loses his/her job without notice. Plenty of retired nurses are reactivating their nursing licenses and returning to the nursing workforce due to the high costs of food and fuel, and the effects of depleted retirement funds. Since all of these experienced nurses are returning to the nursing employment market, this means less jobs available for all of the new graduate nurses that are being churned into local job markets every few months.

I must also mention that Medicaid and Medicare reimbursements are lower than ever. This has affected areas of nursing such as acute care, hospice, home health, long term care, rehab, clinics, doctors' offices, and so forth. These low reimbursement rates mean less money available to pay nursing staff.

While this phenomenon might not apply to the town, city, or state in which you live, it is certainly happening in many places across the U.S. The jobs tend to be in places where most people do not desire to live (read: North Dakota), more rural areas, and towns that do not have any nursing schools located within a 100 mile radius. The pay is probably going to be very low due to regional differences in the cost of living. The working conditions might be less than stellar.

Thank you for the clarification and useful information. This makes a LOT of sense. Did you finish your Bachelors in Nursing?

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24 Posts; 899 Profile Views

The nursing shortage is not over according to the news. What's going on is several things. For one, due to the economic problems many 'older' nurses are not able to retire as they once would have and are working into their 60's and older.

Second, many people have been laid off in the last few years and have become nurses as a second career later in life since that's where the jobs are. The jobs are slowly being filled in that way.

Third, many companies are cutting back on hiring, and the people who are left in their jobs are finding themselves doing the work that two and three people used to do.

Fourth, many nurses are working lots of overtime to make ends meet and companies would rather pay them OT than hire another whole person.

There is still a shortage of nurses in most areas, it's just not as obvious during this lengthy recession. "They" say that once the economy turns around the shortage will be upon us once again, especially as the baby boomers finally are able to retire, and that same group needs more health care as they age.

I'm sorry, but WHERE? I realize the recession has put a halt to many industries, but I have a few engineering friends and another one in Accounting. All of them were offered jobs in the last few months. Half of the jobs are NOT ideal, per se, but it's a lot better than what my BSN (RN) friends are going through. Many of my RN friends have been looking for work for a year or more. I find that unacceptable and just really don't feel like it has anything to do with it being less obvious. Why is it so hard to say this is just how the nursing field is? Everyone seems to use the recession as an excuse, but let's face it, part of it MUST have to do with nursing.

I don't mean to be harsh, but I just want the straight facts. I don't want to hear any "hopeful" stories or have things sugar coated. Thanks for those who were so blunt.

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Delynn118, I really feel for you. But I am glad that you are here and are getting to know about the real situation out there. You are way ahead of your classmates. My advice is to never give thought to what a nursing instructor might advise. Remember, their jobs hang in the balance. They are not working for your future, right?! If you should find another viable avenue at this point, take it. I'd rec the same to a BSN.

Yes, I am really considering it. At the start of our clinicals there was a "buzz" in the classroom, and on my clinical sites I started to ask some of the RN's on the floor what have they been experiencing. Several of them told me the hospital where we were in had a hiring freeze, and another RN asked me what the school was telling us about job perspectives etc. Also my neighbor's friend graduated last May 2010 and just found a job in January. There seems to be just too many stories I am hearing to just call it a rumor.

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There is still time to stop and transfer your credits to a college that will count your nursing credits as free electives. You don't have to feel obligated to continue or limited to your degree. There is still time for change. :) Contact me if you would like to know more.

Sure, do you mean online schools, or schools in general? It is really sad, though since I truly want to be a nurse, just thinking of how ridiculous it would be if I put all this time and effort and nothing to show for it. But practically speaking it is definitely a concern.

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I'm hoping there are jobs for new grads in areas that people maybe don't typically want to work in (geographically or specialty-wise). So, rural areas that don't pay a ton, in positions that aren't very glamorous. Depending on the state, maybe VA hospitals, state psych hospitals, and state or federal prisons. Long-term care facilities. My grampa always told me..."at first, do the job no one else wants to do, wherever they're least likely to want to go. Work your way up." I'm wondering what areas people are searching for jobs in and not finding them, and whether they're willing to do blah shifts in blah facilities in blah areas.

Am I wrong about that? I'll graduate soon, and I want to work in psych/mental health. I'm hoping to get a job at a state hospital or a prison, in a rural area. Luckily, that's what I want to do permanently, and what I went to nursing school to do -- psych in a rural area.

I also want to know what counts as far as "experience." Do they specifically mean they want you to have worked as an RN for one year? Or does other medical experience sway their decision?

All this talk about no jobs makes me real nervous...I left a well-paying job/field to do nursing. I could go back to it I suppose, but I'm not planning on it.

PS - Our ADN program is really pushing the BSN at the non-branch campus of our university after the RN. It kinda makes me shake my head, because they're really pushing their way out of having a program at all after the market is flooded with BSN nurses with $75k in student loans and hospitals that no longer want/need their ADN graduates because they a steady supply of BSN grads.

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