There was an interesting story in the May 7 NY Times about how the sluggish economy and the rising cost of living is easing the nursing shortage. To summarize the main points, many actively working nurses are picking up extra shifts, nurses who have been out of the workforce are looking to return, and older nurses are delaying retirement – all to boost their income during tough financial times. I’m already hearing about new graduates who have to look longer and harder to find jobs out of school in some areas because of diminished vacancy rates.
The article goes on to say that this trend may be temporary and could revert as soon as the economy takes an upturn. I’m not so sure about that. The cost of living will inevitably continue to rise. Everyone is living longer and therefore needs to put more away in a retirement account. And even those of us who are approaching retirement age don’t necessarily want to live on a restricted income. We want to travel, enjoy the finer things in life, help our children and grandchildren and have enough put away for a rainy day – or for extended “bad weather.”
One of the great things about nursing is that it is a recession-proof career. How great that we are able to pick up extra shifts, delay retirement, and re-enter the profession when and if we need and want to?
You can read the article here