UNAC/UHCP RNs called for half-billion-dollar investment and legislative package to fix the nursing shortage crisis by 2030.
Bold Visionary Solutions
UNAC/UHCP members went to Sacramento with bold, visionary solutions to the crisis that include:
- A request for a $500 million state investment from 2025 to 2030 for California’s 77 community college nursing schools. We can double our capacity to graduate new nurses in five years.
- Community Nursing: Assembly Bill 1695 will open the nursing pipeline by creating a high school level Nursing 101 course with automatic admission toward an associate degree in nursing (ADN) at the nearest community college. Bringing in nurses from underserved communities will foster cultural competency and awareness to improve patient care.
- Clearing the Bottleneck: Nursing students need clinical placement hours to graduate. Assembly Bill 1577 will compel more clinical placements from hospitals.
- Staffing Law Enforcement: Assembly Bill 1063 will bring transparency, accountability, and RN input into the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) enforcement of nurse staffing ratios.
There’s a severe nurse staffing crisis in this country—and it can be solved. The U.S. health care system will be short a million nurses by 2030 unless we act now. One third of the 3 million registered nurses in the U.S will leave the bedside in the coming decade. Baby boom RNs have hit retirement while nurses are quitting in record numbers due to burnout, exhaustion, and trauma. Meanwhile, available slots in nursing programs are far below the number of qualified applicants.
- By 2025, our country’s health care system will need about 1.1 million more nurses to meet the needs of older and sicker patients.
- By 2030, 37 states will have serious nursing gaps, with California and two other states at the top of the list.
- 1 in 6 hospitals in the U.S. report a serious shortage of nurses.
- To meet the expected demand by 2030, the number of graduating nurses in California needs to increase 60% immediately.
High cost of nurse turnover
- The average cost of turnover for a bedside RN is $46,100.
- The typical hospital lost between $6.6 million and $10.5 million due to RN turnover.
- Nurses in step down, telemetry, and emergency services had the highest turnover rates.
Nursing Education Backlog
- Enrollment in entry-level baccalaureate nursing programs fell 1.4 percent last year, ending a 20-year period of enrollment growth, new data from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing shows.
- Meanwhile, four-year colleges and universities turned down more than 78,000 qualified applications (not applicants, as people may apply to more than one program). Thousands of qualified applicants were turned away “due largely to a shortage of faculty and clinical training sites,” according to the AACN.