Nurse Practitioner, Agency Nurse Among Hardest Healthcare Roles to Fill

Nurse Practitioner, Agency Nurse Among Hardest Healthcare Roles to Fill

Indeed recently released a report of the 15 most difficult healthcare roles to fill in the United States, after reviewing which jobs remained unfilled after 60 days. Nurse practitioner roles and agency nurse roles neared the top of the list, ranked at third and fourth respectively.

Preparing for the Nursing Shortage

There is a strong need for more healthcare workers of all specialties, but especially nurses. As the nursing shortage continues, it remains likely that the US will be in need of at least 95,000 nurse assistants and 30,000 nurse practitioners by 2025.

59.7% of nurse practitioner roles remained open after 60 days of being posted. These roles in particular remain crucial as NPs have more responsibilities than registered nurses, and are able to write prescriptions. Agency nurse roles were similarly difficult to fill, with 57.8% of these roles still available after 60 days.

“To identify the hardest-to-fill healthcare roles, we compiled a list based on the percentage of jobs unfilled after two months,” Indeed wrote in its report. “Job postings can be open for longer than 60 days for different reasons; in this case Indeed uses this measure as a proxy for hiring difficulty.”

Indeed also noted that nurse practitioner roles, as well as pulmonologist and rheumatologist roles, had over two thirds of their job listings still open after 60 days.

“One of the biggest challenges facing the field of nursing right now is that many will soon retire,” Indeed reported. “This represents not only a shortage of people to do the job but also a large loss of institutional knowledge.”

Expanding the Recruitment Reach

Rethinking nursing recruitment efforts is key for hospitals looking to fill nursing roles of all specialties. Some hospitals offer bonuses, tuition coverage, and housing options in hopes of attracting top nursing talent. But expanding nurse recruitment to other states can help fill crucial roles sooner.

In its report, Indeed highlighted that the nursing shortage was not found in every region of the United State. Recent research by the US Department of Health and Human Services shows that in 2030, though some states are predicted to have serious shortages of nurses (California, Texas, New Jersey and South Carolina), others may have a significant excess supply of nurses (Florida, Ohio, Virginia and New York).

Change your Recruitment Outlook: Embark on a Transformation Journey with Lean Recruiting Techniques

Change your Recruitment Outlook: Embark on a Transformation Journey with Lean Recruiting Techniques

In the nurse recruiting industry, the more applicants that you attract, the better. However, hospitals desire quality over quantity. Shifting your recruiting outlook to the Lean principles of recruiting can ensure a qualified pool of nurses.

Lean Thinking: A Resource for All Industries

Toyota Motor Corporation developed Lean thinking as a tool to maximize available resources to provide value. Lean targets are eliminating waste and increasing efficiency in four areas: removing non-valued activities, decreasing wait time, reducing errors, and boosting customer satisfaction.

While nearly 70% of U.S. hospitals implement a process improvement framework in their transformation journey, the extent and experiences differ (source). Only one in eight hospitals are at a mature phase of implementation. A performance management scorecard can align healthcare and recruitment objectives by focusing on specific metrics by like quality of hire and service, efficiency, responsiveness, cost, and productivity.

Streamlining Problem-Solving

Lean thinking draws its power from creating standardized solutions to common problems. However, it’s imperative to persistently reevaluate the metrics to validate progress and find innovative opportunities. Organizations on a Lean transformation journey have positive outcomes like a shorter time to fill available positions and improved nurse retention. Optimal results occur when the hospital culture supports the Lean model from the top to the front lines (source). By applying the Lean principles, recruiters can focus on activities that develop better candidates.

Lean recruiting simplifies methods and improves performance, while cutting costs and providing better patient outcomes. With a looming nursing shortage and healthcare vacancies stagnating across the board, the traditional recruiting model must change. While there is no quick or easy fix to this long-term issue, Lean recruiting is making positive progress.

leanCaitlin Goodwin MSN, RN, CNM is a Board Certified Nurse-Midwife and freelance writer. She has ten years of nursing experience and graduated with a MSN from Frontier Nursing University.    

Recruiting Nurses for Optimal HCAHPS Performance

Recruiting Nurses for Optimal HCAHPS Performance

The first step in improving Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) performance is recruiting nurses with a focus on long-term retention. The national turnover rate for bedside RNs was 16.8% in 2017 with an average associated cost of $38,000 to $61,000 per nurse. Nursing turnover impacts each hospital’s bottom line, with costs averaging from $4.4 million to $7 million annually (source).

Multiple Costs of Turnover

More importantly, high nursing turnover negatively affects morale, quality of care, and HCAHPS scores. When there is a critical acute need to satisfy scheduling demands, hospitals cannot afford the luxury of being proactive in their recruitment efforts. Unfortunately, patching a schedule full of holes causes rapid hiring decisions instead of considering a quality applicant.

There are connections between patient perceptions of their health care experience and nurse staffing ratios. The hospitals with the highest number of nursing hours per patient day consistently rate higher on HCAHPS scores than other facilities. Nurses and patients alike thrive in a positive nurse work environment. But recruiting nurses with long-term retention factors is only half the battle.

Revisiting the Recruitment Process

Health systems have to streamline their recruitment process to re-focus on hiring and retaining nurses with targeted HCAHPs behaviors like responsiveness, ability to listen, and audience awareness. When interviewing candidates, it is essential to identify how the nurse will communicate with and answer patients. Optimal applicants will treat the patient with respect, communicate effectively, and respond quickly.

Hospitals must strive to recruit candidates who are committed to their work, patients, and the organization. When hospitals remain competitive to hire and retain talent, patients stand to benefit. Top-quality employees make for top-quality organizations and nurses are at the forefront.

Caitlin Goodwin MSN, RN, CNM is a Board Certified Nurse-Midwife and freelance writer. She has ten years of nursing experience and graduated with a MSN from Frontier Nursing University. 

Prepare for the Nursing Job Market

Prepare for the Nursing Job Market

Nursing programs are preparing future nurses for whatever task or challenge they will run into on the job. But these programs aren’t necessarily providing students with the information and tools necessary for navigating the nursing job market. Luckily, Springer Publishing has partnered with Acadiate to walk students and academic faculty alike through steps for career success.

We invite all nursing program leaders, school deans, professors, faculty and students currently enrolled in nursing programs to register for our webinar. How to Help Your Nursing Students Succeed in the Job Market takes place on January 31, at 2pm EST. This webinar is part of Springer Publishing’s new series, Nurse Your Career, hosted by David Murdoch and Zane Westmoreland.

What Can I Expect to Learn?

Throughout the webinar, participants will learn several emerging strategies that nursing programs can adopt to help nurses see greater success after graduation. The webinar hosts will also discuss how increased preparation influences increased enrollment, student retention, learning outcomes, and overall student satisfaction.

Participants are encouraged to ask questions throughout the presentation, to take advantage of the hosts’ knowledge and skills. Afterward, participants will also be able to continue learning through the Acadiate cluster after the discussion. Acadiate cluster users can choose to share their profiles with exclusive nursing employers and graduate programs.

What If I Want to Watch It Again?

The webinar will be available to view again later, on the DailyNurse YouTube channel, if anyone wants to revisit their notes or questions from this session. Curious about what our webinars are like? Check out our most recent presentation, Beyond the Nurse Resume: Communicate Your Value in 2019, on YouTube now.

Registration is open now for How to Help Your Nursing Students Succeed in the Job Market. Don’t forget to mark your calendar for January 31 at 2 pm EST to take advantage of this amazing learning opportunity! We look forward to helping you grow and succeed in your nursing career.

University of Virginia School of Nursing Honored for Diversity

University of Virginia School of Nursing Honored for Diversity

The University of Virginia (UVA) School of Nursing recently received a Health Professions Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine, which covers diversity in higher education. This was the first time UVA’s nursing school has been honored and they were among 35 health professions schools nationwide to receive a  2018 HEED Award.

Lenore Pearlstein, INSIGHT Into Diversity’s publisher, tells News.Virginia.edu, “The Health Professions HEED Award process consists of a comprehensive and rigorous application that includes questions relating to the recruitment and retention of students and employees – and best practices for both; continued leadership support for diversity; and other aspects of campus diversity and inclusion.”

Since establishing an initiative on Diversity, Inclusion, and Excellence Achievement (IDEA) in 2014, UVA’s nursing school has shifted its recruitment, admissions, and retention strategies to welcome more underrepresented and first-generation applicants, established affinity groups for students of color, initiated expansive diversity training for faculty and staff, and urged professors to incorporate diverse perspectives and inclusive content into their courses.

UVA nursing faculty and graduate teaching assistants attend trainings across a variety of diversity-related topics, and all nursing students take part in cultural humility training and a plethora of regular activities to drive the school’s message of inclusivity. In 2018, nearly a third of enrolled students are from groups underrepresented in nursing, and more than 17 percent are male.

To learn more about UVA Nursing’s Health Professions Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine, visit here.

Nursing Leadership in Wound Care

Nursing Leadership in Wound Care

Do you love patient care but long for some autonomy in your nursing practice? Perhaps a leadership position in wound care nursing is the answer. Wounds are often the domain of one or more wound care nurses, as they are especially problematic for nursing departments, particularly those acquired during a hospital or facility stay. A wound care coordinator supervises these nurses, providing organizational leadership and management.

What Additional Certifications Are Required?

Wound care nurses focus solely on prevention and healing. The coordinator holds specific certifications in wound, skin, and ostomy care and is responsible for supervision of the wound care nurses. Wound care nurses may also have advanced certifications in this area, but their task is solely the everyday management, assessment, and treatment of wounds as ordered by the physician.

Wound Ostomy Continence Nurse (WOCN) certification is the highest available to registered nurses. It is obtained through the Wound Ostomy Continence Nurses Society, which requires completion of a formal WOC program. These require a bachelor’s degree or higher, at least one year of clinical experience following RN licensure, and clinical experience within five years of beginning the WOC program.

The Certified Wound Specialist (CWS) certification is sponsored by the American Board of Wound Management and is available to Registered Nurses and several other non-nursing health professions. Certification requires that the candidate have a bachelor’s degree and three years’ experience in wound care, or completion of at least a year-long fellowship that has been certified with a credentialing organization.

The National Alliance of Wound Care and Ostomy offers the Wound Care Certification (WCC) to RNs and LPN/LVNs, as well as NPs and other allied health professions with an active unrestricted license. This certification requires completion of an education course that meets the Alliances criteria but does not specifically require a bachelor’s degree.

What Are the Responsibilities of a Wound Care Coordinator?

Wound care coordinators evaluate the success of treatment modalities, discuss nutritional needs with dieticians, and consult with medical directors, physicians, and plastic surgeons on healing progression and complications. Wound care coordinators develop and implement programs that focus specifically on skin and wound care. They also conduct interdisciplinary rounds with other departments whose areas of expertise intersect and potentially affect the patient’s potential for wound healing. Wound care coordinators and nurses usually meet regularly with the administration and nursing to update on the status of wounds as well.

How Do Patients Benefit?

Wound care nurses and the coordinators who manage them elevate the level of care for wounds by making that their sole focus. Without the full responsibility for a patient’s overall primary care, wound care nurses and coordinators are better able to focus on bringing their patient to an optimum state to facilitate healing. That’s a win for the facility, the physicians, the nursing department, and especially the patient.

Learn more about wound care nursing here.


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