Nursing is a highly admirable profession, with dedicated and compassionate practitioners who provide comfort and care to those most in need. Unfortunately, there are not nearly enough nurses to meet healthcare demands. According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, “The United States is projected to have a nursing shortage that is expected to intensify as baby boomers age and the need for healthcare grows.”
A report by the American Health Care Association backs up that assertion, estimating that there were more than 135,000 nursing vacancies in 2007. If you’ve ever considered becoming a nurse, the good news is that there are ample professional opportunities available, and an online nursing program can be a flexible education format in which you can earn your degree.
The Nursing Shortage
One of the most significant contributing factors to the nursing shortage is the fact that traditional brick-and-mortar schools have limited resources and are understaffed by faculty, slowing the pace of the number of graduates each year. This, coupled with the aging population, has exacerbated the problem.
To fill the gaps and address the crisis, online nursing programs have become increasingly prevalent. They offer quality education in a flexible, cost-affordable manner to people who might not have the time or money to enroll in a traditional nursing school full-time.
The fact that students are now able to receive a nursing education, without having to give up their current jobs or relocate, means that many more nurses will be able to enter the workforce in the coming years.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than 580,000 new RN positions will be created by 2018, increasing the size of the workforce by 22%. Among the traditional healthcare location of hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, and private medical offices, nurses can also find work in research laboratories and administrative positions.
Enroll in an Online Nursing Program and Advance Your Career
Whether you’re seeking to enter the nursing profession or earn an advanced degree that will help you to move ahead in your career, there are various online nursing programs to meet your needs. Online degree programs are available from the entry-level LPN right through to the highly prestigious Doctor of Nursing.
Through an online nursing program, not only can you receive the education you need to start employment as a nurse, but if you choose to do so, you can also continue your education online as you work, developing the skills and knowledge that can help you provide more effective care for your patients and position you to move up in the professional ranks.
With today’s ever-expanding need for quality healthcare practitioners, nursing will continue to be among the most in-demand professions. If you have the desire and dedication to become a nurse, or if you’re already a nurse and want to further your education, now is the time to enter an online nursing program. Begin exploring the variety of online nursing programs available to you today!