Scarce Resources Article: Strategies for Addressing the Nursing Shortage: Coordinated Decision Making and Workforce Flexibility
The issue that was chosen to do an editorial response on was “Strategies for Addressing the Nursing Shortage: Coordinated Decision Making and Workforce Flexibility”. The nursing shortage statistics are as follows: in 1990 the United States had an 11% vacancy rate of unfilled, full-time RN positions. This number ebbs and flows over time but since 2001 the United States has had a 13% vacancy rate of unfilled , full-time RN positions and this has not changed as in past times ( Fox & Abrahamson, 2009). According to Fox & Abrahamson, 2009,” A web of dysfunction exists that is far more complicated than any single factor, “(235-244).
There are many influencing factors to blame for this nursing shortage. One such factor is the population imbalance created by the Baby Boomers aging and leaving the workforce and the smaller Generation X’ers that have to try and care for all of these aging people (Fox & Abrahamson, 2009). Another influencing factor are our aging pool RN’s. Our average RN age is 43 and we have many nurses retiring. Half of RN’s are going to be over 50 by age 2010 and the U.S. does not have enough new nurses to replace them (Fox & Abrahamson, 2009). The third influencing factor is that 65% of our nursing graduates come from associate degree programs