The nursing shortage in South Florida is only going to get worse
Experts in healthcare and education formed the Keiser Nursing Advisory Council, which will help ease the state's impending nursing shortage. According to experts, the shortage of nurses is expected to reach about 60,000 by 2035. Members of the council, who also participated in a panel discussion at the conference, include lawmakers, community leaders, and representatives from Mount Sinai Medical Center and Keiser University.
It's been over two years since the COVID-19 outbreak, and nurses are not just overworked, but many of them are looking to leave their jobs altogether. Over a third of nurses have reported that they might leave the profession by the end of 2022, and the Florida Hospital Association estimates that 70% of hospitals in the state would face a serious staffing crisis.
Marie Woodson, a state representative, thinks nurses should be offered greater perks like free or low-cost childcare and subsidized housing. CEO and president of Mount Sinai Medical Center Gino Santorio acknowledged that rising housing costs are a glaring obstacle to bringing in qualified nurses to South Florida. If the problem isn't addressed, it could lead to severe staffing problems like the ones seen in FDC Miami.
How Florida can combat the nursing shortage
Santorio said that to attract and retain nurses, hospitals needed to develop new strategies. He has worked to increase the number of nurse educators, rapidly implement new technological developments, and use simulation labs to help new nurses feel more confident. He also mentioned that Mount Sinai provides onsite childcare services.
Even after graduating from a Florida university, many recent nursing graduates find themselves unable to find affordable housing in the state. Seeing this, Vice Chancellor Belinda Keiser of Keiser University aims to foster collaborations between healthcare facilities and universities and advocate for tuition subsidies.
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