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Utah suffering severe nurse shortage


Specializes in Vents, Telemetry, Home Care, Home infusion. Has 44 years experience.

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Specializes in Gerontological, cardiac, med-surg, peds. Has 16 years experience.

The majority of the problem lies in that there are not enough faculty to teach nursing students combined with the aging babyboomers which equals more retiring nurses and not enough new nurses entering the field to care for them.

Amen! Let's shout it from the housetops! And the reason we don't have enough nursing faculty is.....EXTREMELY LOW PAY!!!!

'sigh'...it's an international problem. I worked in Swizerland and France and there is a shortage everywhere. We really must LOVE our job to stay...but you know what? I'm pretty proud to be a nurse!


As far as travel nursing goes, another way to travel is to simply move to another state for a year. You can apply or a jub by phone or email, in areas where they are short of nurses, you can be sure you will find a job. I have travelled to two states that I wanted to visit and simply got my apartment first and then went job hunting. Both places paid better than my home city hospitals, and I was able to experience a whole new area for a year, sight see, see a different "culture".

There's lots of options out there for nurses willing to try something new.

I settled for a year 'cause that's how long the apt lease was, and informed human resources going in that I was there for a year. Their response was , ""We'd be glad to have you for a year.""

Go For It !

hey! That's exactly what I want to do! Just spend a year in Utah to learn a little bit more about the culture...I hope to find a job there!

La Martine.......... it is an awesomely beautiful state.

It would be a wonderful experience.

I have been a nurse {RN} for less than a year and here in VA I started at $22 / hr on days in and ICU. However I was an LPN for 13 before going back and getting my RN. Now due to the shortage and people just not appreciating nursing I am going to become a truck driver. I have done the research and I will make more after 2 years of experience as a truck driver than a nurse with 10 years. Dam I wish I could get my money back from school and use it for something better.

What a novel idea !! sounds great to me....I wish more people had the courage to really live their lives, to admit ....maybe they made a mistake, and just chuck it and start something entirely new.

So many cling hopelessly, and desperately to the one thing they know....get depressed.........take drugs for the cure....

when all they need is a new way of living.

People cling "for the insurance" etc. ....etc....

Lots of luck.

I lived in SLC, Utah for 5 years - just left this past January. I worked for the University of Utah. Last year I made $16.50 an hour. I have been a nurse for 7 years now - so that rate was for 6 years of experience. ICU/OR nurse. The real crime was that new grads were being hired on at $16.51 an hour. I took this problem to my manager - who understood my dilemma. But when she tried to take it further, all I ended up with was a raise to $16.97 an hour. So yes LOW PAY is a big problem in Utah. And yes it is a beautiful state - but I'm glad I don't live there anymore. The LDS influence was overwhelming for me - notice I said FOR ME. Others may not have experienced it as such, but I actually had patients ask to allow another nurse take care of them because I wasn't LDS, and I had fellow nurses preaching to me and doling out Books of Mormon. And I do think that oppression of women has something to do with the situation in Utah. LDS women are supposed to stay home and raise their families - and work outside of the home if they have to. And this comes straight from a coworker who was a staunch Mormon.

renerian, BSN, RN

Specializes in MS Home Health.

Pay sucks. I would not go there either. renerian

Here in Minnesota , Twin cities area the new grads now start off very close to 24.00 per hour they are trying to get people to become nurses. Since there is such a nursing shortage here they think the pay will attract people into the nursing field!!!! I find that great!!!


Specializes in Corrections, Psych, Med-Surg. Has 15 years experience.

Looking at Utah's pay scale, all I can say is DUH! Is the nursing shortage there really such a mystery?


I work in Brooklyn, NY. I once walked into a Hasidic pt's room & was immediately asked by his wife if I was menstruating. When I just stared at her, trying to figure out if I heard right, she explained "'because if you are, he cant be touched by you and will need another nurse". Well, what he dont know wont hurt him.

caroladybelle, BSN, RN

Specializes in Oncology/Haemetology/HIV.

Well, I guess you could wear gloves..........

[it will be interesting to see if history repeats with the recent down turn in the economy in the US, and rising unemployment rate. will candidates start flocking into the nursing profession? [/b]

Yes, they are, but they can't be trained fast enough. Not enough instructors and/or classes. Waiting lists are growing.


Specializes in Gerontological, cardiac, med-surg, peds. Has 16 years experience.

Yes, they are, but they can't be trained fast enough. Not enough instructors and/or classes. Waiting lists are growing.



Specializes in Corrections, Psych, Med-Surg. Has 15 years experience.

AND, the last time nursing schools vastly expanded their capacity (in the 1980s, and then again in the mid-90s), they were left in the lurch when the next part of the cycle found far fewer students than they had prepared for.

Because of this and because they KNOW there is actually NO nursing shortage, wise nursing schools will be very slow and reluctant to expand their programs.

Monica RN,BSN

Specializes in ER, ICU, Nursing Education, LTC, and HHC. Has 20 years experience.

I believe the nursing shortage is hitting every state as fewer nurses seem to be graduating these days, there is a high demand, but the decrease in the number of instructors also limits the amount of students they can have in a class. Here in Florida we have a shortage due to low pay. The average RN starts out at 17.00 an hour. experianced nurses are very lucky to ever see the mid 20 range after many many years of experiance and higher education.

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