Strategies To Overcome The Nursing Shortage

November 8, 2021

Nursing shortages are happening for a lot of reasons. Shortages can affect the industry, economy, and even the lives of patients. That is why giving solutions to it is relevant. Building trustworthy in-home staffing services can help in addressing these issues. They can give strategies to overcome the nursing shortage, and they can help medical facilities with hiring quality nurses without too much hassle. 

What Factors Contribute To The Nursing Shortage?

  • Retiring Nurses

The normal retirement age for nurses is 50 years old. However, there are a lot of factors that could cause nurses to retire early, such as their bodies are already too weak to work due to the overwork they did when they were younger, or some may retire since they struggle to catch up with the technological advances happening in the medical field. So, instead of getting into a strenuous situation, they decide to resign. Because of this, the number of nurses that are coming in is not enough to replace nurses who are retiring. 

  • Increase In Numbers Of Old Patients

The increase in the number of old patients that need to be taken care of in medical facilities has led to a scarcity of nurses. Nurses have to attend at a 1:1 nurse-patient ratio in this type of case or an even higher ratio. Since most old people suffer from critical conditions, they need close monitoring and the utmost care from nurses. Old patients are housed in medical facilities or homes for the aged where they have to be taken care of 24/7. With this demand, the number of nurse courses that are needed in these facilities and institutions is growing too. 

How Do You Handle Short Staffing Issues?

Nurse shortages can be solved by implementing strategies such as:

  • Allowing Scheduling Flexibility

Giving time for nurses to take a break can make them work more efficiently rather than forcing them to take a long shift, which can lower the quality of their work. Instead of giving them a long shift, you can give them a shorter shift, then give them a break before coming back to work again. Allowing scheduling flexibility can make nurses free of stressful work schedules and can be beneficial to patients, to them, and to the medical facility. Nurses can give more satisfactory service if they can have time to rest or take a quick break. 

  • Promoting Career Development 

Giving nurses the opportunity to attain the highest possible education for their specialization can make them more efficient workers. Facilities should help their nurses increase their learning by giving them training and the chance to upgrade their level as a nurse. In that way, they can be capable of handling more duties and responsibilities as a nurse. This will also motivate more people to take nursing courses which can soon increase the number of nurses in the medical industry. So there will be no more shortages of nurses in the future. Give the nurses the support they need so they can stay longer in the facility and can assist more patients who need them. 

  • Hear Nurse’s Voice

Gather with your nurses and listen to what they have to say about solving the issues of shortage of nurses. They are the ones who can see the real situation and who can understand the real happening behind the shortages. Listen to their opinions and suggestions, this may help put a solution to the issue. Supervisors and managers should find time to schedule a timely meeting with the nurses to discuss the issue and write down suggestions, then finalize them if they are indeed helpful. Lending an ear might make the situation better as well as build a better understanding between the nurses and management. 

Here are some of the strategies to overcome the nursing shortage, solutions are still being studied. Nursing staffing agencies have also helped a lot in making the shortage issue solvable. They can distribute the right number of nurses to medical nurses who need them. Sometimes nurses are enough, but dissemination is not done properly, especially if they are secluded in their areas only. But with the help of nurse staffing agencies, they can be assigned to medical facilities that need them most.  

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Andi Perullo de Ledesma

I am Andi Perullo de Ledesma, a Chinese Medicine Doctor and Travel Photojournalist in Charlotte, NC. I am also wife to Lucas and mother to Joaquín. Follow us as we explore life and the world one beautiful adventure at a time.

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