Staffing Shortage In Nursing Care

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The nursing world with its strengthening economy and employment growth will create a critical shortage for nurses. Practicing registered nurses encounter short staffing in their workplace. It is a concern for nurses in their profession and personal well-being. There are increasing reports on the exploitation of mandatory overtime as a staffing mechanism. An unsafe staffing practice will result in harmful outcomes on patient care, medication errors, and eventually nurses leaving the bedside or the profession. The causes of nursing shortages are attributed to aging populations, increase of patient lifespan, and the expanding role of nurses. Recent reforms in healthcare will also provide people access to the healthcare system. Additionally, the…show more content…
Mandatory overtime with a nurse, overloaded to work more than their required shift, not only decreases the chance of patient safety but also minimizes their nursing autonomy. Thus, ultimately worsening the staffing shortage problem nationwide. With the retirement of the baby boomers, the healthcare is losing a massive amount of nurses in a short amount of time. Research has indicated that majority of nurses intend to leave their current job for a new position or retire early due to excessive amount of hours mandated to work. Nursing students, many of those enrolled also abandon their studies for another career. With a reduced amount of nurses in the future, patient care and safety are at…show more content…
The mandatory overtime cycle will not be easy to break; multiple interventions are necessary. Healthcare facilities can achieve this through by first understanding their objectives and goals. One alternative is voluntary overtime; it allows the nurse to decide whether to consent or refuse a request to work overtime while still promoting continuity of care. Maintenance of sufficient staffing necessitates strong retention efforts on current workers as well as effective employment on new staff members. The use of nurse float pools and staffing agencies also alleviates shortages. More importantly, nurse leaders must establish and maintain an environment where employees feel connected to their organization. Strategic planning does not necessarily eliminate all overtime. However, eradicating mandatory overtime can significantly reduce the primary reason of high nurse turnover. It demonstrates to be a safer method for staff coverage. Magnet hospitals universally are prohibiting mandatory overtime or severely limiting an employer’s ability to require extra hours. As for other government hospitals and nursing homes, mandatory overtime may still be legal. Thankfully, a number of states have stood up to prohibiting the practice altogether in the healthcare

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