Nurse Shortages in American Hospitals

Logan Overhulser, Staff Writer

Hospitals are feeling overwhelmed as there is a lack of staffing in them – most being nurses that are needed.  According to NPR, nurses are waiting months to get licenses to aid current hospitals. 

The main culprit holding nurses back is the national board which delivers certifications to qualified nurses.  Qualified nurses are on hold however and can be stuck in a waiting line to just get the green light to start working.  There are even some nurses who previously held licenses, who were barred from working because they did not have current ones.

This current situation is a problem because the people have to wait weeks to even several months to get his or her certification to take part in the job they’ve been working for a long time. It is not fair to the people trying to get jobs because they are unemployed and have nothing else they can do, also it can’t be healthy waiting that long for a job because it can cause lots of stress, anxiety, and frustration.  

Many nurses want to respond to their call to service – to help others.  Especially during a time of a pandemic, nurses were needed, and some answered the call but were unable to join the fight against COVID-19 due to the certifications and licensure. 

This worldwide problem may be fixed by the nursing boards expediting the process of becoming more lenient on nurses that are easily cut out for the job. Some states have tried issuing temporary licenses, which are way more costly so most nurses don’t do it.  A possible solution could be to extend licenses time frames and to speed up the process of vetting nurses qualified for the job.  Citizens of the US should care and take this more seriously because a hospital near where you live could be going through this and yourself or people you may know could also be at risk for not having proper care or support if they go ill.