October 6, 2023

Nursing schools are denying qualified applicants due to staffing shortages

Editor's Note

Due to staffing shortages, thousands of qualified applicants were turned away from nursing schools last year, despite the nationwide shortage of nurses, CNN Business October 5 reports. According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, nearly 78,200 qualified applications were denied by nursing schools in 2022.

Nearly 66,300 applications who were turned away were for entry-level bachelor’s degree programs. The organization notes that there are nearly 2,000 full-time vacant faculty positions at nursing schools—or just under 8% of the teaching slots. One of the hurdles is low salary, was noted in the article. The national median salary for nursing school professors with master’s degrees is just under $89,000, compared to $120,000 for advanced practice RNs.

With the pressure of the COVID-19 pandemicwhich is still impacting the healthcare setting—and staffing shortages, nursing is in crisis. Many are leaving the profession and/or going on strike with Kaiser Permanente healthcare employees' recent strike marking the largest healthcare strike in US history. To combat the nursing shortage, the US Department of Health and Human Services announced in August that it will supply an added $26.5 million into the Nurse Faculty Loan Program, providing low-interest loans to prospective nursing school faculty and canceling up to 85% of loans for those working as full-time faculty after graduation.


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