Such interventions include: making changes in work hours; increasing financial bonuses for employment, wages, scholarships, and grants to support education; attracting "second careerists" into the profession; recruiting nurses from other countries; offering pay differentials and incentives for shift work and specialty nursing; making changes in practice modalities; and having facilities and administrators provide greater recognition of the contributions of the nursing staff.
Once again, another nursing shortage provides an opportunity to stop the cycle.
Patients often access information about health care problems through federal or state health information "hot lines", obtain educational materials produced by patient advocacy groups or organizations that address specific disease conditions, and retrieve health information on the Internet through such sites as: and patients can do much to increase the safety of their care.The nation has long endured many cyclical nursing shortages.It has been demonstrated from these past shortages that there are ways to alleviate the problem.Society in General It is difficult to address patient safety without acknowledging the current nursing shortage and its impact on practice.
The Registered Nurse (RN) workforce is aging in the near term and shrinking in the longer term (Buerhaus, 2000).But, one can question whether or not the motivation to change this cycle is present.The health care industry in this nation has long failed to appreciate that, in most health care settings, the main commodity that is being provided is nursing care, not medical care.However, the nation’s health care system is prone to errors, and can be detrimental to safe patient care, as a result of basic systems flaws. Yet health care providers face many challenges in today’s health care environment in trying to keep patients safe.