shortage of registered nurses
Shortage of Registered Nurses
The issue of shortage of registered nurses is an international crisis that goes against the dream of achieving quality health care globally. So far, the stakeholder in health sectors for both high and low-income nations are finding difficulties in planning and organising sustainable health care for their clients. It has been recorded that, in Africa a single nurse can be in charge of caring 50 patients (Barke, 345). Statistics shows that Africa is lacking more than 600000 nurses who will ensure quality health provision.
On the other hand, the high-income nation like Britain and the United States are in short of nurses but they have an option of recruiting quality nurses from low-income countries. The thesis statement in this article is that shortage of registered nurses is a global problem that needs to be considered. There are many factors that cause the shortage of nurses these are expensive fee needed to study nursing, shortage of nursing school, brain drainage, an unethical practice that cause nurses to be expelled from the nursing practice, workforce imbalance, job motivations, environmental factors, the state of security, poor infrastructure (Staudinger, Bettina, Victoria, and Herwig, 345)
Consequently, shortage of registered nurses is caused by high cost of studying nursing practice. To join a nursing school, potential students rely heavily on scholarship to complete their education. It has been recorded that, family sell their houses and properties to enrol their children in nursing school. This is evident in 3rd world countries. Therefore, shortage of registered nursing is due to the insufficient fund to educate bright students who have a dream of pursuing a nursing career.
Shortage of registered nurses is also induced by brain drainage. This is a strategy that high-income nations are using to solve the shortage of registered nurses in their countries. They recruit quality nurses from low-income countries, and this affects the quality of nursing care in these low-income countries. The former leader of the ICN, Mr. Hancock suggested that “the ideology of brain drain in the nursing sector should be prevented. Only then, will the globe achieve its millennium goal of providing quality health care to everybody in this world” (Barke, 567). Additionally, when professional nurses are poached from their native countries, it impacts negatively by leaving the country short of qualified nurses.
Contrary, shortage of registered nurses has been caused by some nurse being reckless and not observing the ethic code of conducts. The America Nursing Association refers to professional codes of conduct for nurses as the core backbone of the nursing profession (Fowler, 1). Therefore, they formed codes that will guide any upcoming or professional nurses on how to be effective in their service delivery. The codes of ethics are divided into three categories that are the clients, practice and profession. In details, nurses have the responsibility to serve the clients effectively. Secondly, they are required to offer the highest standard of services in practice. Lastly, nurses are required to act professional and ethical at all time. There many codes of ethics that nurses need to master before starting any nursing practice. From the class lesson, we learnt that nurses are required to be sharp in decision-making processes pertaining issues such as moral judgement, ethical concerns and relationships. Moreover, ethical codes that nurses should master are the principle of confidentiality, power, honesty, moral strength, respect and cultural sensitivity. According to Spector, ethical components in nursing incorporate trust, respects and good working relationship with others (Fowler, 23). When a nurse violates any of these codes of ethics, he or she may be expelled from practicing nursing. Many upcoming nurses have been expelled from practicing nursing hence contributing to the crisis of shortage of registered nurses.
Some countries have poor planning and management in their nursing sector that results in workforce imbalance. For instance, the health minister may concentrate many qualified nurses in one area like the capital city leaving the rural areas with a low number of nurses that are not qualified enough. More ever, some rural areas depend on volunteer nurses to offer them services. The public is required to travel a long distance to the capital city when seeking treatment for severe health illness such as cancer, diabetes and kidney failure that require close nurse monitoring. Brain drain also influences workforce imbalance. For instance, quality health care is granted in high-income countries. Therefore, for an individual in the low-income country to be cured a complicated illness like cancer they are required to travel to the United Kingdom, the United States or Canada for these services because they lack profession nursing in their countries.
A country may fall in short of nurses due to its inability to pay them well. Nursing practice requires many year of studies in the nursing college that are expensive. Therefore, registered nurses expect a better pay fee for their service as they try recovering the money they spent in nursing college fee. Additionally, job motivation strategies such as promotion, vacation package, and better retirement benefit will ensure that registered nurses are retained. Additionally, rich countries use huge offers that are better salaries, vocational package, allowance, job promotion and better working environment to attract qualified nurses from low-income countries to join them. Hence, this promotes brain drain and cause the shortage of registered nurses in low-income countries.
More ever, harsh environment conditions may discourage a registered nurse from working in that area. Many people prefer working in the moderate environmental state. Therefore, in arid areas the number of nurses will be low compared to places of moderate climatic conditions. The Sahara desert countries have reported the high registered nurse shortage. This is because the climatic condition is discouraging for nurses.
State of security will also influence nursing shortages. Countries faced with violence such as Syria, Somalia, Palestine and Burundi are running short of nurses because students learning in nursing school are affected. Therefore, the future of nursing services is threatening despite the current shortage. Also, many intellectual people including nurses always seek refugee cover in a peaceful country where they can practice their profession.
Poor infrastructure is also a factor that pushes away nurses. Currently, many people rely on the internet and phone network service for daily communication. When nurses are based in an area where road network are poor, and the phone signal is poor, they may decline the offer and search for alternative income generating activity. Therefore, high-income countries have a high number of registered nurses compared to the low-income country because they are equipped with good infrastructures.
Simultaneously, the current state of shortage of registered nurses has presented an opportunity for nurses to benefit from this crisis. Any individual with a nursing credential cannot end up unemployed. Therefore, the always are always listen to when they need a salary increase or promotion. Additionally, nurses have high chances of working in different countries due to the high rate of brain drain, especially in the nursing sector (Huston, 45). Far from that, despite the opportunities presented by the shortage of registered nurses, they also face many challenges from it. For instance, nurses are always under stress and often work long hours. When you work under the stressful condition you are always prone to injury, medical error, fatigue and work dissatisfaction. Therefore, the quality care service offered to the patient will be low (Huston, 45).
There various way of solving the problem of nurse shortage. Learning institution should practice system that will ensure community-based health care preparation (Buchan, James, and Lynn Calman, 405). This will ensure that the students develop a close bond with the people. Hence, it will not be easy for them to been attracted to other countries. Graduating students in the nursing faculty should always learn things that graduate are required to studies. This is will ensure quality education. The health ministry and stakeholders should reach out to young people in projects such as guiding and counselling to advise them to pursue a career in nursing this will ensure recruitment of younger people into the field of nursing. Hospitals should initiate flexibility at the workplace and plan a proper schedule that will not overwork nurses (Sare and LeAnn, 79). Additionally, it is wise to reward registered nurses with promotion and vocational package. It is genuine to encourage experienced nurses to mentor the upcoming nurses so that quality health care can be maintained. The salary for nurses should be satisfactory to the nurses to avoid searching for green pasture abroad or another career. Put in place measure that will ensure retiring nurses have an active part to play in health care provision.
The government should implement policies that will fund nursing school and promote resources needed to produce a qualified nursing graduate. Also, the government should ensure registered nurses are recognised by Medicaid and Medicare. Health care institution should upgrade their technology in equipment used in health care. This will equip the less number of nurses to work fast and reduce fatigue (Sare and LeAnn, 109).
Lastly, upcoming nurses should have respect for the ethical code. In nursing profession code of ethics entails the respect for the client dignity, ensuring that the client has the right to self-determination, initiating good judgement, executing duties effectively, accepting accountability when on duty, being alert to patients interests, having a good working relationship with other nurses and alleviating suffering (Fowler, 156). Also, all nurses are required to maintain confidentiality at any time. Nurses are required to be cultural sensitivity. This means that any nurse should be able to attend to any patient from diverse culture and background. In this case, culture involves the concepts of diverse racial, thought, actions, ethnic, language, religion, customs, communication, ideology and values. Finally, nurses should aim at becoming a good world citizen. For example, during the outbreak of Ebola in 2014 in the Western African country it was a chance to make a difference in the world for those practising nursing careers. When nurses adhere to these codes of ethic, they will always have their job, and their registration will never be nullified. Hence, this will ensure sustainability in the number of nurses to prevent future shortages.
Concerning that, there are many reasons that cause a shortage of nurses. These reasons are expensive fee needed to study nursing, brain drainage, the unethical practice that cause nurses to expelled from the practice, workforce imbalance, job motivations, environmental factors, the state of security, poor infrastructure. It high time for the global leader to form policies that will ensure the shortage of registered nurses is resolved. For instance, the health ministry and stakeholders should reach out to young people in projects such as guiding and counselling to advise them to pursue a career in nursing this will ensure recruitment of younger people into the field of nursing.
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