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Nursing Shortage Builds Demand

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Written by NS StaffJuly 20, 2011

It is common knowledge that the US is facing a nursing shortage. Most often you will hear the cause is due to a population that is living longer than ever before. What makes the problem worse is that nursing schools can't enroll as many students as are needed in the workforce.

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The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) is working with schools, politicians, other medical organizations, and the news media to alert the world to this problem and bring about legislative reform.

Some states are attempting to make it easier for nurses to come work for them through agreements such as the RN and LPN/VN Nurse Licensure Compact. This Compact means that if you are a licensed nurse in your home state, and that state has signed on to the Compact, you can practice in any other Compact state without needing to be licensed in those states.

Some other studies show:

  • A little more than 30 states are currently facing a nursing shortage. That number is expected to rise to 44 states by 2020, according to the Health Resources and Services Administration 2002 survey.
  • One million new and replacement nurses will be needed by 2012, which places registered nursing as the leader in job growth, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
  • Approximately 126,000 nurses are currently needed to fill hospital job vacancies, according to American Hospital Association.

You can read all of the statistics at AACN's Web site. In the end, the numbers all add up to the same answer; now is the time to start your nursing career. Whether you want to be a registered nurse, a nurse practitioner, or a home health nurse, you will be able to help people as soon as you graduate.

See a list of schools/colleges offering nursing programs

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