The U.S. Nursing Shortage

The U.S. is in the middle of a major nurse shortage. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Registered Nurses are among the top occupations for anticipated job growth, set to increase from 3 million jobs in 2016 to 3.4 million jobs in 2026, a growth rate of 15 percent (compared to 7 percent for all occupations).

The shortage first stems from the fact that Baby Boomers are aging and increasing the country’s demand for healthcare. The U.S. Census Bureau report from 2012 projects that by 2050, the number of U.S. residents age 65 and older will be 83.7 million, or nearly double the 43.1 million seniors in 2012.

An aging population also means more nurses are retiring, leaving vacancies behind. According to a 2013 survey, 55 percent of RNs are age 50 or older, meaning more than one million nurses are likely to retire within the next decade.

On the other end of the spectrum, not enough new nurses are coming up through the career pipeline to fill vacancies. This is due in part to a smaller younger generation, as well as retiring staff that caused U.S. nursing schools to turn away over 64,000 qualified applicants from nursing programs in the 2016-17 school year, according to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.

At the same time, a report in the American Journal of Nursing found that insufficient staffing has resulted in overworked, stressed, and dissatisfied nurses, causing 13 percent to change jobs within a year and 37 percent to report that they “feel ready to change jobs.”

What’s a U.S. healthcare employer to do?

International Recruitment: A Nursing Shortage Solution

U.S. health employers facing nursing shortages can turn to international recruitment as a long-term solution. This method for filling job vacancies was common practice in the early 2000s, but delays in visa processing starting in 2007 followed by the Great Recession in 2008 caused many recruitment programs to be scaled back or canceled.

Fortunately, visa processing times have improved dramatically over the past decade. International nurses can take the NCLEX RN exam at test centers throughout the world before they relocate to the U.S. This speeds up the immigration process as government policies continue to move toward using visas to intentionally bring in highly skilled professionals who will live in the U.S. permanently.

International recruitment is beneficial for U.S. healthcare employers faced with the following predicaments:

  • Chronic vacancies that take months to fill
  • New recruits who demand greater incentives
  • Unsustainable levels of contingent staff spending
  • Facility or program expansion requiring new nurses in volume

WorldWide HealthStaff Solutions: Your Ideal Partner for International Nursing Recruitment

WorldWide HealthStaff Solutions offers direct hire international nursing recruitment, providing you with full-time, long-term nurses who join the ranks of your regular staff members once they relocate to the United States. This method maximizes your recruitment dollars. Thanks to a lack of fees and markups, our clients often see a return on investment within six months.

In addition to our advantageous recruitment methods, we also tackle all the immigration logistics. All your recruits need is your sponsorship for a Permanent Resident visa. We handle the rest, including sourcing and screening applicants, facilitating the hiring process, managing immigration paperwork, verifying credentialing and licensure, and coordinating the relocation process.

Team Up with HealthStaff for Nursing Shortage Solutions

In truth, international recruitment isn’t designed to solve short-term, urgent staffing needs. However, with no end in sight to the current nursing shortage, now’s the time to plan for long-term solutions—and international recruitment with HealthStaff can significantly contribute to those plans!

Contact us today to learn more about our international healthcare recruitment methods!

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