Nursing Shortage: when is it going to happen??

Nurses General Nursing


I am so disheartened to read that new grad nurses are STILL having an impossible time finding jobs. I decided a year ago to enter into nursing thinking that surely a year from then things would get better and I would see fewer desperate posts from new grad RN's. Well, it seems to not have changed at all and I am not into my 1st year of an 2 year RN program and am getting scared. I cannot afford to not be employed immediately following graduation as I am a single parent/sole provider. I know the reasons for why this is happening: nurses who were set to retire didnt, at the same time new grads being pumped out of schools, employers being in a position to be super picky as a result. But what I want to know is, is there anyone out there who may have done real research or is an economy buff who can give me an educated answer as to when this Nursing shortage is going to kick in, aka when will new grads again be in demand? It is sickening to me to read that RN's are looking for CNA positions and cant even get those. Someone please shed some hope on the situation???

Specializes in Med Surg, Specialty.

While no one can predict the future with certainty, part of the ability of nurses to get jobs now, and in the future will depend on you - are you able to take any shift/weekends? Are you willing to be on a floor that isn't your first choice, or in a nursing home/non hospital job? Are you able to relocate? Are you able to get a job in a hospital as a tech or unit secretary before graduating to give you preferential status for transferring in-house to a nursing position when you graduate? I know many nurses went back to work or increased their hours because their spouses lost their job, so one would hope that as the economy as a whole gets better (assuming it does soon), that there would be more positions open. However, something to consider too is that as more jobs become available, nursing schools are also now pumping out a lot more grads - because there was a huge push during this economic downturn for people to flock to the 'safe' job of nursing and start school!

But I think in the end, whatever the economy and situations will be at that time, being flexible for the items listed in the first part of this post will give you a big heads up to get a job.

It's a cycle. Just hang in there. It may not be soon but it will happen.....again and again and again!

I don't think anyone can give you an answer because much of what is happening now is due, in no small part, to uncertainty about how the new health care bill will play out and it's effects on staffing. There are many who will gladly give you their opinions on this bill, but no one knows for sure.

There has never been a shortage of nurses-just a shortage of nurses that are working as nurses. If you check with your state BON and see how many are licensed, you will realize there is a disparity between the number of nurses that are actually working as nurses, and the number licensed.

Hospitals have always cried nursing shortage, among other reasons, to allow nurses from other countries to immigrate, as they will not complain about nurse to patient ratios and working conditions. By creating a overload of nurses as they do as part of a cycle, it creates competition for jobs, allowing them to pay less, and offer smaller benefit packages.

Ever wonder where all these new grads for all theses years that the nursing schools have been working? We really haven't built that many new hospitals to need this many new nurses. Many become disillusioned with nursing after several years, and move on to other careers. In my community, there is a 90 bed hospital, the only one around for over an hour drive, yet our local community college has been cranking out 50 new grads a year. The hospital burns them out after a few years, chews them up and spits them out, then just picks and chooses nurses out of the overabundance of new grads that wait in line for a job. Now with the economic downturn, nurses are hanging onto their jobs longer and working under worse conditions, as they know there are plenty of new grads to fill their jobs.

I think you also have to realize that yes the economy is terrible right now, and ones flexibility, connections and experience do have a lot to do with getting a job after graduating. Just think about how many people you have worked with in your other jobs who were not so great at doing their jos, or communicating, or behaving professionally. Nursing school does not automatically make you a great interviewer. If you give off bad vibes, employers run..period. Qualified or not. I don't deny that things are rough right now, but I think if you're open and willing to do WHATEVER shift, floor, etc necessary to begin with you will be fine. My school graduated about 80 this past June, and according to the liason who helps our students prepare for boards, and prepare resume's etc the last grad just found a job this month!! June graduation, boards passed as early as July... 3 months for 80 new grads to find jobs.... Not bad!! Right?? I was freaking out about it also but I figure that things will change quite a bit in the 2 years it will take me to finish the program, and face it... nursing positions will be in need FOREVER!!! Sickness is a HUGE part of life!! Just keep pushing and believe Nursing is DEFINATELY NOT the new real estate!!

There is NO nursing shortage. Nursing is NOT recession proof. It might be easier for a new grad nursing major to find a job nowadays than let's say an English or History major, but all new grads are having a tough time finding jobs.

The economy is not getting any better.

With low census and canceling, some employed nurses are hardly working.

Specializes in Psych.

I've seen "by the year 2018 1 million additional nurses will be needed" quoted in many places, but have no idea what think tank originally projected that figure. That indicates there IS going to be a rising need for nurses, but it's impossible to tell between now and then the point at which the supply of jobs is going to start to significantly outweigh the number of those who want them.

Specializes in ER, Renal Dialysis.

Actually nursing shortage is real. I've worked many places and there was never a time when we really had excess staffs or not being called for yet another overtime. I have survived as a temp for almost a year, relying on staff shortage on getting slots.

This is the real deal:-

Hospitals are very reluctant to hire new grads, preferring instead to get nurses that had years and years of experience. Lack of efficiency, not willing to spend on training, and risking errors. They prefer people who can work asap, with less to no supervision. And even with this, they are even reluctant to consider an intake at all. And in the end, the remaining staff on the floor will have to cope with the extra duties (thus, hiding the shortage). This is how it is being played in where I am at the moment.

If you want it bad enough and are willing to work....the jobs are there for you to get. Be willing to take the part-time new grad position, and the over nights and weekends.....and you'll be fine. I graduate in December and I already have a job that I accepted yesterday and had one other offer prior to that. Both are in critical care, and in areas I am interested in. Both jobs weren't advertised as being for new grads, but I went for them anyway.

It's a cycle. Just hang in there. It may not be soon but it will happen.....again and again and again!

Yes, it is cyclical. When I first tried to get into nursing in 1993, we were told the only jobs available were in long term care . . . when I finally became an RN in 2005, every hospital was hiring in virtually every unit . . . now, it's the doldrums again. Given that this recession (depression) is the worst we've ever had, I think that all the economists and talking heads are just guessing, when they say, "Next year, things will turn around". Really, no one knows.

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