How would you like a job that no matter where you went, you were in demand? The pay is great. Bonuses are paid when you are hired. You do not have to work in the same place year after year. In fact, you can change the vocation landscape every quarter if you wish. What kind of job am I speaking of? Nursing.
There is such a nursing shortage, they can demand just that. Not just in the United States, but all over the world. It is estimated that there are over 120,000 nursing vacancies in America. And it isn’t getting better. As the US population continues to get older, the nursing shortage is expected to reach 800,000 in the next decade.
Nurses can name their price. Some are making as much as $60-70 per hour. Yes, these are the best of times … and the worse of times for nurses. Good, because they can practically name the terms of their employment. Bad because they are being over worked and our health care is suffering as a result of it. It is only a matter of time that someone’s life is lost as a result of this.
American hospitals are starting to look overseas to satisfy their need for nurses. As this is being written, legislation is being worked to allow these immigrants a path to citizenship as they work in our hospitals.
Pulling nurses from overseas creates problems for those countries that are losing nurses. Good health care is as much a premium there as it is here. This is not the long term solution to the problem.
Our government throws money at everything. Even in nursing education they provide educational grants, loans, etc. The problem is they do not have enough professors to teach new nurses. In fact, there were almost 30,000 qualified nursing students last year that could not get educated.
Is this the government’s responsibility to ante up even more money to educate new nurses? That is not for me to answer, but it seems like some of these agencies and hospitals could do more to encourage and help nurses enter the workplace. After all, these same agencies are willing to pay upwards to $5,000 as a hiring bonus for qualified nurses.
This may not seem to be a problem to you … until you find yourself needing qualified healthcare.