Nurses Week brings shortage issue to light

As hospitals and healthcare facilities across the country celebrate National Nurses Week, many organizations also worry about the nursing shortage, not just in the U.S., but across the globe, according to Ozy.com.

India needed 2.4 million more nurses, according to a 2010 report from the World Health Organization, while Canada anticipates a shortage of 600,000 nurses by 2022. The aging baby-boomer population in the U.S. also means an additional 2 to 3 million patients will enter Medicare each year, combined with the more than 8 million people who signed up for health coverage under the Affordable Care Act, according to the article.

The primary care physician shortage, along with a slew of nurses set to retire, exacerbates the issue, said Peter McMenamin, senior policy fellow and health economist at the American Nurses Association. Another factor is the lack of faculty to teach nursing students--schools turned away 79,000 qualified applicants last year because of faculty shortages, said Robert Rosseter, a spokesman for the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, told the publication.

"[I]n the next 10 years the job market open up another million jobs for nurses alone," Charlie Aasand, director of behavioral health at Portneuf Medical Center in Pocatello, Idaho, which is currently looking to hire nurses, told Local News 8.

In New Mexico, legislators proposed streamlining licensing requirements for nurses who move to the state, in an effort to recruit more nurses to work there, FierceHealthcare previously reported. Gov. Susana Martinez (R) also requested the state provide funds to launch a recruiting campaign to draw nurses to the Land of Enchantment.

To learn more:
- here's the Ozy.com article
- read the Local News 8 story
- check out the WHO report

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