The job of RN is in demand with a projected 800,000 shortage by 2020. Several reasons are responsible for the shortage and demand for RN’s. The demand for RN’s is expected to increase in all areas, with a increase in demand by 40% between 2000 and 2020. There are multiple reasons for the demand.
- Aging workforce: the majority of RN’s in practice are age 48-57 and heading for retirement. There are not enough student nurses in the pipeline to replace the number projected to retire
- Aging population: The baby boomers are moving into retirement and aging. This large group of people is moving into the lifespan when health care services are used more readily.
- Increased longevity: Our ability to manage chronic illness has allowed us to live longer. This also means this population will need increased health care. There is an expected increase of 54% in those 65 and older. The aged are the largest group of consumers of health care services.
- Too few nursing school openings:
- It costs a lot of money to educate nurses and many schools are hesitant to commit more money to these slots. The ratio of instructor to student ratio for clinical supervision is mandated by state regulation: usually no more than a 1-10 or 1-12 ratio…unlike intro to psychology that may have over 300 students in an auditorium receiving instruction. There has been an increase in graduating nurses in the past 10 years but, the trend is now going in the other direction. With recent budget cuts to education, administrators are looking for costly programs to eliminate or reduce and nursing is moving to the top of the list for cuts to open slots in nursing school.
- Schools of nursing have to compete for clinical sites and may be limited to how many students they can place at these sites. This leads to another reason for limited admission numbers.
- Nursing faculty is hard to come by. A Masters in Nursing or PhD is required to teach in most states or required by the college or university. The private sector pays more than education salaries, making it difficult to recruit into these nursing faculty positions.
So for these reasons: you will be in demand. In times of economic difficulty it may be more difficult for a new nurse to find her first job. The recession of 2008—12 has found part time nurses returning to full time and retired nurses returning to the work place. Full time nurses picking up extra shifts. Elective surgery numbers go down and thus lower hospital numbers and need for nurses.
Watch this PBS broadcast on nursing shortage/ projected need for future: http://video.pbs.org/video/1301585391 . Hospitals will choose an experienced nurse over a new graduate. For this reason you may not be able to be picky with your choice for jobs in a tight economy, which always turns around sooner or later. I still see all the graduates finding jobs…..some taking a bit longer and choices are not as plentiful. The top student nurses are finding their perfect job! Continue reading in my secret section to find the answer to how to land these coveted jobs in the area of your choice.
Go to your states website below to see the projected need: