KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Resident Nurses Find Tough Search For Jobs Post-Graduation

Though a national shortage of nurses is taking hold, newly minted resident nurses are having a hard time finding jobs as the economy struggles, "delaying the retirement of experienced nurses," USA Today reports. "Those who find work often can't get the better-paying hospital positions they had hoped for and instead are turning to nursing homes, home health care or other settings, says Carylin Holsey, president of the National Student Nurses' Association. An advisory for new grads published by the association warns that the market is 'flooded' with experienced RNs who have come out of retirement, delayed retirement or gone from part-time to full-time employment because of the recession." A survey last year found 44 percent of more than 2,000 nursing school respondents hadn't found a job after graduating in the spring. "Large nursing shortages are still forecast as aging Baby Boomers need more care and millions of additional Americans get insurance in 2014 under the nation's new health law" (Young, 7/9).

Related, earlier Kaiser Health News coverage: Doctor Shortage Fuels Nurses' Push For Expanded Role (Villegas, 2/22). 

The Glendale (Calif.) News-Press/Los Angeles Times reports on the difficulty of California nurses to find a job, and a program that is helping them. "Through a Verdugo Workforce Investment Board program funded by federal stimulus money, [nursing graduate Armine] Khudanyan landed a job she loves in the emergency room at Glendale Memorial Hospital and Health Center. … The workforce board pays half the costs for hospitals to train new nurses, said Don Nakamoto, labor market specialist for the agency. The board has spent roughly $250,000 to subsidize the salaries of about 40 nurses during their 12- to 16-week training periods at Glendale Memorial, Glendale Adventist Medical Center, Providence St. Joseph Medical Center and Verdugo Hills Hospital." But the job market is tight, some other officials agree, because of delays in retirement for many older, more experienced nurses, making it more difficult for these new graduates to find work (Kisliuk, 7/9).

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