Is the nurse shortage a myth? One new report seems to suggest so.
According to a survey conducted by Nursing Degree.org, a nursing education and career portal, 62 percent of newly graduated nurses will have trouble finding jobs in the next year.
The study surveyed registered nurses who had graduated in the last two years. Most of the students surveyed indicated they had trouble finding a full-time job in their field, or were not working in nursing at all, despite their qualifications.
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“The so-called nursing shortage is really a myth,” says Cathy Miller, director of education for nursing degree.org. “The idea that we as a country are experiencing a drastic shortage in nurses is not really correct. Most nursing jobs now specifically state they are not interested in non-experienced nurses.”
Recent studies have suggested that with the rising age of baby boomers, there will be a rise in demand for nurses and other health professionals. But Miller says the data doesn’t take into account technological advances and a shift in medical care.
“Between the Affordable Care Act and the advancement in health technology, the number of nurses per person will only continue to decline, not rise. That’s why these new nurses are having such a hard time with their careers—there really isn’t any demand,” Miller says.
The information in this study contradicts information from the federal Bureau of Labor and Statistics. According to the BLS Employment Projections 2010-2020 released in February 2012, the registered nursing workforce is the top occupation in terms of job growth through 2020. It’s expected that the number of employed nurses will grow from 2.74 million in 2010 to 3.45 million in 2020, a 26 percent increase.
The projections further explain the need for 495,500 replacements in the nursing workforce bringing the total number of job opening for nurses due to growth and replacements to 1.2 million by 2020.