Nursing Shortage 2021: What to Know Before Answering the Call

Nursing is one of the fastest-growing professions in the United States. However, the supply of qualified nurses can’t keep up with the ballooning demand. Experts predict the nursing shortage of 2021 will continue for the rest of the decade unless something gets done soon.

The good news is nurses are being paid more than ever before and have a wider variety of opportunities in nearly every city in America. Hospitals and other medical facilities are desperate for skilled RNs and do everything possible to recruit the very best in the field.

With that said, the nursing profession is hard to get into, primarily due to the level of knowledge and expertise required. Not only does it require a degree, as well as regular continuing education courses and a considerable amount of training once the job starts. Once all of this work is complete, there is a good chance that a person will have a career open to them for the rest of their lives.

Nursing school

Nursing school is an arduous process for any applicant. It has been particularly fraught in the past two years. A typical nursing school program involves between one to three years of schooling. There are several basic classes in biology, chemistry, and other general fields that help prospective nurses learn the science behind what they are doing on a daily basis. Then some classes help with relating to patients and understanding the procedures they will perform. One helpful tip is to start reading and studying for these classes before beginning the program.

Some nurses work in hospitals, specialist clinics, and daycare facilities and have a long list of physically demanding tasks they have to perform every day. They start to receive the basics of these tasks while in nursing schools. Many nursing programs also require internships and work to be done at different businesses. These tasks are not always done for pay. Registered nurse (RN) degrees can be completed in two years, while graduate degrees take longer.

The application process

Applications for nurses can be arduous. Nursing is one of the most intimate professions in the world today. Nurses interact with patients when they are at their most vulnerable. As a result, an intense screening process ensures prospective nurses are suitable for the role. RNs undergo comprehensive background checks before getting hired. They will have to pass routine checks on their criminal record and sometimes even credit checks.

Some questionnaires interviews help gauge a candidate’s familiarity with the job and temperament. One reason there are so many open nursing positions is that they cannot pass the screening process. They have negative marks in their past or issues with anger or patience. Screening helps prevent a person from being burnt out and potentially putting the life and health of their patients at risk. The nursing shortage, however, may make the process slightly easier at this time.

The job

Being a nurse is usually one that a person can keep for many years if they want to. There is always demand for nurses, and that demand will only continue to grow as the population grows older. It is a rewarding job that pays better than many other professions and has room for upward mobility. Possible nurses should make sure they can move up into an organization before taking a job. A prospective nurse can also move between several different institutions to find the perfect fit for their skills.

But the job can also be grueling. Nurses sometimes have to work extended shifts at odd hours. They are occasionally injured performing work tasks, and some nurses have even been injured by patients. Many nurses move out of the profession and into less taxing professions such as medical coding and billing every year. Prospective RNs need to know about all of the realities behind the job before they consider applying.


Anyone interested in becoming a nurse needs to understand the many years of hard work required for them to attain their goal. They need to be willing to work in a physically demanding environment for many years. They will also need to go through a stressful hiring process and learn many tasks on the job. But if they are willing to overcome these hurdles, a prospective nurse can go on to a rich, successful, and rewarding career as a nurse at a hospital or doctor’s office.

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