Last Updated 21 Mar 2023

Challenges Facing the Nursing Profession

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Looking ahead at some of the challenges facing the nursing profession seem pretty daunting. Nursing shortages, a rapidly aging population (to also include an aging nursing population), short staffed hospitals are the norm these days. These are just a few examples of some of the problems facing nurses today and into the next century. With a population growing and hospital care struggling to keep up as it is, we have a catastrophe mounting on our hands. The baby boom generation is nearing retirement age.

This means they will start to require more and more health related stays in hospitals as their health starts to fail them. The baby boomers make up a whopping 28% of this country. According to the article, The Baby Boomers’ Massive Impact on Health Care, “AHA acknowledged that the over-65 population will triple between 1980 and 2030, with the first baby boomers turning 65 in 2011. Although the health and lifestyle of people at age 65 is very different than it was in generations past—it’s even been said that “60 is the new 50”—the reality remains that chronic conditions continue to plague the population.

In fact, AHA reported that more than 37 million boomers will be managing more than one chronic condition by 2030(Orlovsky, www. nursezone. com). Add in the advancing age of nurses as well. As there is a demand for qualified nurses right now, the demand is growing everyday. According to the ANA the average age of a registered nurse is currently at 46. 8 years. This is a scary thing. Since there is already a shortage of nurses, what will happen when these older nurses start to retire? Where and how does the growing demand stop growing?

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This is a huge question that needs to be answered quick. The ANA has also stated,” According to the BLS report, more than 2. 9 million RNs will be employed in the year 2012, up 623,000 from the nearly 2. 3 million RNs employed in 2002. However, the total job openings, which include both job growth and the net replacement of nurses, will be more than 1. 1 million. This growth, coupled with current trends of nurses retiring or leaving the profession and fewer new nurses, could lead to a nursing shortage of more than one million nurses y the end of this decade(Nursingworld. com). With deficits like that what happens to healthcare?

As the demand for qualified nurses increases, so will the need for qualified teachers. More students need to be taught to become nursing professionals. While this may be one of the last things people think about when it comes to the demand for registered nurses it is one of the more important areas. If there are not qualified people to teach, how do you expect individuals to learn the material needed to succeed?

According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, nursing schools rejected 26,340 qualified applicants in 2004 primarily because of faculty shortages. And 7 percent of the 10,200 full-time faculty positions at 609 U. S. undergraduate and graduate nursing programs are vacant(Arias www. medscape. com). The nursing profession will be fine. It has overcome and adapted throughout its history and will continue to. The professionals of the field will fight on, just as it does with each and every twelve hour shift that passes by.

Advancing the Nursing Profession

“When you're a nurse you know that every day you will touch a life or a life will touch yours”.  This is a famous saying from an unknown source that has touched my inner soul as I perform my nursing duties to my patients.

For many years, the advancement in the field of science, medicine, technology and research has lessened hospital stay, reduced medical cost and improved the lives of people.  Professionals in various fields of medicine continue to explore the human body in their attempt to prevent sickness and diseases, discover cures, reduce the number of death and injuries and alleviate pains.

The remarkable discoveries have given rise to better medicines, sophisticated medical apparatus and equipments that contributed to a large extent towards early detection and non-invasive surgical procedures.  So much of these discoveries are made and the advancement in medicine will never cease.

In the field of nursing, I have witnessed the role of technology and medicine towards the improvement of quality of life of many patients.  Some patients may thank the wonders of miracle drugs and others are thankful for the new lease of life that technology has given them.

Yet, there are still countless of patients who need a human touch and listening professionals to reduce their anxieties and to regularly visit them in their sickbed.  Such is a vital role of a nurse that I intend to explore as I work towards the advancement of my profession.

As a student nurse, I was given the opportunity to be assigned in all the units in the hospital.  I directly work under the supervision of a clinical instructor and professional nurses in various units.  In many instances, I also had the chance to assist physicians and surgeons as they perform medical treatments and surgical procedures to their patients.  Every learning opportunity is an important experience for me.

 As I approach my final year in my studies, I cannot help but think of the field that I want to specialize in and how I intend to advance my nursing profession.  My trainings have allowed me to work under a lot of pressure in the emergency department where every second counts to save the lives and alleviate the sufferings of those who are in distress.

I have been part of the team that has witnessed the birth of a new creation in the delivery room.  From orthopedic, aesthetic, cardiology to neurology related surgeries, I have assisted doctors and nurses in the pre-operative and post-operative procedures.

It was challenging to be assigned in the nursery and pediatric department to monitor the health conditions of the infants and children who were prone to many illnesses due to their low resistance.  I have felt the joy of seeing a patient wake up after days of being in a coma in the intensive units.

I have also witnessed miracles and many sufferings from patients in the oncology unit.  There are intrinsic rewards and challenges that nurses like me has experienced in our day-to-day practice.

As one of the forefronts in promoting the quality of life from birth to the end of life of every person, nurses can do so much in touching the lives of people and in giving hope to those who refused to believe that there may still be a faint of light at the end of the tunnel.  This is the task that I have decided to explore in the advancement of my nursing profession.

In my trainings and experience in the hospital, I have had a mixture of good and painful experiences.  Although these are expected in any medical related profession, I still feel that nurses make a difference in the lives of others.  We can affect our patients positively and make them hold on even to the blink of hope that can change their lives.

I felt a strong calling to work on a nursing profession that specialized in the field of oncology when I was assigned in the oncology unit.    Although there are researches, good drugs and advanced therapy for the detection, intervention, and treatment of cancer, nothing could replace the support, human touch and care that nurses could extend to patients who are in need of an assurance that we would be with them and their families as they endure their treatments and pains.

Nothing could equal the anxiety and stress of going through chemo or cobalt therapy knowing that the treatment could provide a long term positive effect, a short-term remission or unfavorable result although these days treatments tend to prolong and enhance lives.  Research has provided us with more hope and more people who are afflicted with cancer tend to resume normal lives after regular treatments.

Although my professional nursing practice may begin after I secure my credentials, I always believe that I have already began to practice my calling on the first day of my clinical experience.  Nursing is the career that I have chosen not only because of my desire to help the sick and make them feel better but I have felt so much fulfillment as I touch their lives in many ways that I have been touched.

Working either in the oncology unit or in the hospice care is a field that I am most drawn to.  I intend to learn as much as I can from my work and from the experience that I will gain from caring my patients.  My concept in advancing nursing comes not from doing research to cure diseases but from the golden rule, “do unto others as you would have them do unto you”.

I lived by the Bible verse found in 1 Thessalonians 5:14, that reminds me to “Encourage those who are weak and afraid”.  I believe that this is a good reminder for all the nurses.  It is not enough that we extend physical care to our patients.

We also need to spiritually and emotionally lift them up to help them cope with their illnesses and to have a positive outlook in life.  Let us not lose sight of what our profession is all about.  Just like those days when Florence Nightingale rendered her dedicated services, we should always offer a lending hand instead of waiting for our patients to ask for them.

The Ambition in Nursing: Individual Growth and Development towards Providing Quality

The nursing health care system is as an integral part of the society as any other sectors promoting human development. The nursing profession has attended to the health care needs of the people for many years already. It is a profession which has endured many challenges, and progressed into an institutionalized sector in the health care system dedicated to commit and serve the society’s need. It is a profession embedded in the principles of dedication, care, and professionalism. However, as challenges persist in the nursing work force around the world, this has posed a serious challenge in the role of the nursing profession.

Fagerberg (2002) stated in his study that the metaphor of nursing care is entailed in a woven fabric. The goal of nursing professionals is to create a role which is for the people’s health, rather than the entire health system. Nursing care entails the ambition of nursing to promote a need for consistent and clear statement of concern for patients. One of the pressing problems in the health care sector is the volatile supply and increasing demands for professional nurses as mentioned by Grene and Puetzer (2002).

Different strategies have aimed to entice new nurses in the profession, and retain and support them in the delivery of high patient-care. As Grene and Puetzer (2002) mentioned, their lies a difficulty in the health care system to promote nursing as a future profession. The current nursing crisis has also developed a dilemma by which led some nurses towards another career because of disillusionment, and because they do not feel valued for their hard work. The crisis in the nursing profession must work on developing a new paradigm wherein opportunities and presented, and need of the nurses are met. Ambition in Nursing

Curtin (2001) describes ambition and integrity with significant influence of with and wisdom. For nursing professionals wanting to develop in the field, ambition governs their passion and desire to succeed and achieve. The motivation to attain an ambition can constitute various reasons depending on the subjective views of a nurse. However, in this paper, we briefly describe how the idea of succeeding one’s ambition must be attuned with attaining a character with integrity. Nurses who are essentially in the profession to succeed must realize the essence of the process, rather than the ultimate gain at the end.

Having ambition in nursing must not be disillusioned with the current and persisting challenges of the profession. Some nurses have become discouraged over the fact that in real-life context, their idea of nursing while they were still studying becomes suddenly buried when they realize the problems they dealing. Some simply has become disillusioned and starts to find a new career path, others simply gets dismayed and lose the encouragement of growing as part of the health care system. Ambition is for personal gain.

Nurses are faced with the difficulty to maintain as promoters of moral leadership because of problem inherent in the system within they work. Hamric (1991) argues that repeated exposure of nurses in the insensitive and sometimes even immoral behaviors may influence a nurse’s personal conscience. Psychological pressures can greatly influence a nurse’s motivation to pursue his or her own ambition. Nash (1990) adds that existing problems in the health care system can also subvert good intentions and goals of an individual.

Rognstad, Aasland, and Granum (2004) concluded in their recent study about the future career option of nursing students that 80% of their respondents regard getting their bachelors degree as a basis for building on a further education. Motives of the respondents were also measured through the variables human contact, helping others, and job security was significantly considered. Among the respondents who emphasized this ambition in graduating with a degree is shown to be less interested in giving care and help to others. In the study, the authors were able to analyze and confirm this attitude through in-depth interviews.

In another study, authors Ingersoll et al. (2002) determined the characteristics of New York nursing work force to assess their level of job satisfaction and commitment in their setting. Brought by the demands of the challenges surrounding the nursing profession, investigations have suggested the high dissatisfaction of nurses in the health care environment and their likelihood of leaving their profession. In the study, respondents of the study indicate that personal, organizational characteristics and commitment have contributed to their intent of pursuing their nursing ambition in a p of 1 to five years more.

Also shown in this study is the intent of satisfied and committed nurses to leave within the next five years. Findings of this investigation suggest the organizational environment, educational preparation, and personal characteristics of currently employed registered nurses affect their current job satisfaction, organizational commitment, and plans for continuing as a nurse Ingersoll et al. (2002). The impeding challenges in the nursing health care system is bringing more nurses into a dilemma to stay committed and dedicated in pursuing their individual career ambitions.

As nursing shortage and retention has lead to several nurses option to leave the profession, the system must encourage the new blood of younger generation nurses to pursue their options in the field. Several factors contributing to their commitment and dedication in the field is due to the inability of the system to promote individual development. Lack of opportunity and options or nurses also makes them vulnerable and makes them rethink of their options. Nursing must address the need of the system to uphold individual development and growth, along with providing quality health care and meeting the increasing demand.

Changes have progressively developed strategies, and hopefully soon it will motivate nurses to pursue their ambition in the field. References: Curtin L. (2001). Preserving your integrity while building your career. Nursing Administration Quarterly, 25 (2), pp. 1-4. Fagerberg, A. M. (2002). The woven fabric - a metaphor of nursing care: the major subject in nursing education. Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences, 16 (2), pp. 115-21. Grene, Maureen T. ; Puetzer, Mary (2002). The Value of Mentoring: A Strategic Approach to Retention and Recruitment. Journal of Nursing Care Quality, 17 (1), p67-75. Hamric, Ann (1999).

The Nurse as Moral Agent in Modern Health Care. Nursing Outlook, 47 (3), p. 106. Ingersoll G. L. , Olsan T, Drew-Cates, J. , DeVinney, B. C. , and Davies, J. (2002). Nurses' job satisfaction, organizational commitment, and career intent. The Journal of Nursing Administration, 32 (5), pp. 250-63. Nash, Lauren (1990). Good Intentions Aside: A Manager’s Guide to Resolving Ethical Problems. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. Rognstad, M. K. , Aasland, O. , and Granum, V. (2004). How do nursing students regard their future career? Career preferences in the post-modern society. Nurse Education Today 24 (7), pp. 493-500.

Why I Became A Nurse

Nursing was not always something that I wanted to do in the beginning. I wanted to be a Photographer. Looking back at that period in my life there were many areas of my life that I needed to assess. I already had a daughter and was currently going to school for Photography. So the question became do I keep my passion, and will it always pay the bills? Alternatively, do I change career paths and pursue a new career that I know will pay the bills and will always provide for my family?

My Journey

I knew that I would be a good nurse. I was loving, kind, thoughtful, a good communicator, liked helping people, I was caring, and I also liked math and science. The Journal of Nursing Education states, “researchers found the concepts of caring and nurturance were identified as high motivators for choosing nursing” (Williams, Wertenberger, Hames, Gushuliak, 1997). At that time, I was working back office at a Urology office and was going to school. I decided one day that to be able to provide for my daughter if something were to happen between my husband and I that I could always support us. Therefore, my journey began. A Journey Amongst Friends

I was fortunate enough to go to nursing school with my best friend Harley. We had gone to school since Elementary school. I knew that if we did it together that I would make it to graduation. I was right we did make it to graduation. We had some difficulties and it was a very stressful time in our lives, but we made it.


Now, at this point in my life, I have been a nurse for eight and a half years, and I am very fortunate that I chose this career. I have not only been able to help provided for my husband and our three kids, but I also enjoy taking care of people and not just the paycheck. I have been able to help many pregnant woman through their painful childbirth. I have been able to assist to comfort them when their babies do not make it, and so much more. I can say that after eight and a half years that I chose the right profession, and I am pretty darn good at it.

Challenges Facing the Nursing Profession essay

Related Questions

on Challenges Facing the Nursing Profession

What is the biggest challenge facing the nursing profession today?
The biggest challenge facing the nursing profession today is the increasing demand for nurses due to the aging population and the shortage of nurses in many areas. Additionally, nurses are facing increasing pressure to provide quality care in a cost-effective manner, while also dealing with the challenges of a rapidly changing healthcare landscape.
What is a critical challenge to nursing practice in the 21st-century?
A critical challenge to nursing practice in the 21st-century is the need to keep up with rapidly changing technology and medical advances. Nurses must stay up-to-date on the latest treatments and protocols, as well as be able to use new technology to provide the best care for their patients. Additionally, nurses must be able to effectively communicate with other healthcare professionals and patients in order to provide the best care possible.
What is the nursing role in the 21st-century?
The nursing role in the 21st-century is to provide quality care to patients, advocate for their health and well-being, and collaborate with other healthcare professionals to ensure the best possible outcomes. Nurses are also increasingly taking on roles in health promotion, disease prevention, and health education. They are also playing a larger role in research and policy development.
What are the nursing skills in the 21st-century?
In the 21st century, nurses must possess a wide range of skills to provide quality care to their patients. These skills include communication, critical thinking, problem solving, and the ability to use technology to access and manage patient information. Additionally, nurses must be able to work collaboratively with other healthcare professionals to ensure the best possible outcomes for their patients.

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