Nurse market saturation 2015 and beyond ?


I like to get some ideas from the field as my daughter is planning to get into nursing program (or maybe pre-med). I have seen a lot of private schools(online schools also) are recruiting more students now. For the next 4-6 years, what do experienced nurses and management see how job market will be for the following career classification. However we know there will more baby boomers and seniors to take care of.




Also I see base on our current economy, new nurses with no/little experiences will have hard time find jobs?


montecarlo64, ASN, BSN, LPN

Specializes in ED, Long-term care, MDS, doctor's office. Has 29 years experience. 144 Posts

I would not recommend med school due to decreasing reimbursement for services and huge student loan debt...I would suggest respiratory therapy or physical or occupational therapy route, have her get her 4 year degree & then she can always transition into a BSN...But, here in the midwest, 40 applicants for every 1 nursing position:(



109 Posts

We are in California btw.


Specializes in Oncology; medical specialty website. 5,978 Posts

Pretty bad in CA; a lot of competition for jobs even for experienced nurses.


NickiLaughs, ADN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Emergency, Trauma, Critical Care. Has 13 years experience. 2,383 Posts

Absolutely stiff competition in California. Despite the economy, I have been very luck and attained jobs at some great hospitals. You need great letters of rec, great experiences a good school and a great GPA, add a BSN you may have a shot.

A lot of people aren't aware that nursing is somewhat seasonal, summers are VERY slow and winter is usually Very busy.

Most of us have noticed a downward trend, people just can't afford to be sick right now. Job loss, insurance loss, etc has added to this. There are weeks like this week where we couldn't find enough experienced nurses if we tried, and other weeks half of us sit at home and play wii because there's just no patients.

If she's dead set on medicine, there are a lot of different areas to explore. MD is a good choice IF she wants to specialize, and really doesn't mind the lack of sleep. We often have to call MDs in the middle of the night for orders on top of their daytime rotations.

CRNA...well in order to get there she would need to have ICU experience as an RN, so back to the first problem. The job market for them is getting worse at least in California, other rural states do have opportunities.

NP: job market is weak in California also. I don't think as bad yet as some.


Jenni811, RN

Specializes in Intermediate care. Has 3 years experience. 1,032 Posts

if she wants a job right out of school, she needs to stand out from the crowd. She will be applying against nurses who have years and years of experience. What can she offer?? Get certified in things, do volunteer hours (LOTS!!), get a job as a CNA in a hospial or nursing home, depending her area of interest. Get involved in clubs at school. best advice i can give for being marketable after graduation cause the economy for nursing isn't going to get easier.


ErinS, BSN, RN

Specializes in Hospice. 347 Posts

I would not go to med school myself, because I love being a nurse and I did not want to give up a decade of my life to school and end up with tons of debt. I would not worry about the CRNA or NP part. That is something she will need to work as a nurse first to achieve, and many nurses who never thought they would seek those degrees do, and many who thought they would, don't.

The reality is nursing was hit by the economy. Plain and simple. Prior to about November 2008 nurses could get jobs easily. Then the economy tanked, and the jobs went away, and nurses who hated nursing and had long ago left, came back because their husbands (or wives) had lost their jobs. My point being, there is no doubt in my mind that nursing will once again be a high-demand career. And I would argue if your daughter is willing to be flexible and perhaps relocate, nursing can still be a high-demand career.

Beyond being in demand, nurses get paid well and generally only need a 2 year degree. They often work flexible schedules and have interesting days at work. There is a wide variety in nursing, so it would be hard to really try everything and get bored with it all. And nursing offers a lot of really unique opportunities when you have some experience- travel nursing, working for regulating agencies, teaching clinicals, working for drug companies.

This has been very long, but I truly love my career, and I get frustrated when I hear over and over that there are no nursing jobs. That is not exactly true, and it certainly will not be true in the future, as healthcare demands increase.


Loque, BSN, RN

1 Article; 53 Posts

I pretty much agree with all the above posts, give or take some points.

I have worked in healthcare for the past 3 years, and have noticed the economy REALLY affecting how patients are treated, and even IF they obtain treatment. With co-pays rising, and reimbursement to the provider decreasing, it's becoming somewhat difficult to be a healthcare professional, as less patients actually seek care.

I'm not a nurse yet, but have noticed that the consensus is that there is a nursing shortage in relation to the amount of patients they treat, but hospitals are finding it difficult to hire in a down economy.

However, I'd still tell your daughter to go and study for what she likes.:p

MD and Nursing are different, and she'd have to go for what she will enjoy doing.

And while the furture is unclear on whether the current trend of rising insurance costs and premiums, or whether the US goes with some kind of universal healthcare... well at least she has a job she enjoys.

Hopefully by the time she graduates in 4-6 years, the whole economy will turn around also.

Just my :twocents:



Specializes in on the fence about nursing. 46 Posts

New Jersey. Last winter a nursing student friend of mine went for a patient tech position interview at Princeton and was declined. The response from the nurse manager who interviewed her was that she (the nurse manager) would rather hire her as an RN after she graduated. I haven't heard any responses from the friends that I started nursing school with concerning the job market, although a lot of my friends either dropped out or flunked out. I do check the ads in the newspaper. There are not a lot of jobs in the central Jersey/SE PA nursing market. I dropped nursing school to transfer to another school. Kind of had a choice: quit my job and lose my home or pass nursing school and face the uncertainty of the job market. I also had the same rationale as Goodmed. Found better nursing school with schedule that is not so tight....not currently employed in job where I can shut the door and study, you know.



Specializes in on the fence about nursing. 46 Posts

To add to the above....any field you are in or if you are considering entering when you leave college requires a lot of savvy...heed the advice of Jenni811 and Loque.


Quickbeam, BSN, RN

Specializes in Government. 1,011 Posts

The only RNs in my market right now who can get hired easily are bilingual ones. Spanish/English. OP, if your daughter has any language skills, I'd say pour a lot of time into Spanish.



Specializes in Acute Rehab, SCI, Clinic, HH, Med/Surg. 30 Posts

Agree with Nickilaughs, Jenni811 and Loque.

Since you are in California it is very competative here! Even for nursing schools programs!!I also live in the southern CA area. My daughter is currently going to a nursing school in WI because of the hassle with prereq's and being on a waiting list here in CA!!Some ADN programs have a 3 yr waitlist and that is after you finish your prereq's of course. My suggestion is if you can afford have her go straight for her BSN at the university level.

And while she is going to school (maybe 2yr of nursing school) start getting her foot in the door by being a CNA or PCT at the local hospital so she can start networking and getting some experience under her belt. Or maybe even volunteer. She will be exposed to the nurses and nursing manager on the unit and more than likely can get into their new grad residency program.

As far as NP or CRNA, she will need her BSN with a couple of years of floor nursing before she will get accepted into a graduate level program.

Best of luck!!