Eight important nursing trends in 2023
Nursing is the largest occupational segment in healthcare across the US, with the demand for professionals continuously rising. No wonder the profession was also first on the Best Healthcare Jobs list in US News & World Report 2023. As long as humans and their need for effective healthcare exist, the demand for nurses is expected to remain strong. However, the advent of technology has triggered certain changes in the field. Some of these have already been completely implemented, while others continue to make their way into day-to-day nursing activities.
Here are a few prevalent trends in the field to keep a look out for during this year and beyond:
The rise of online nursing education
In the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic recently, most world systems switched to digital mediums. Education was one of the fields on the list too. Even though physical business activity has resumed globally, some fields are still relying on hybrid or virtual models. In the field of academics, online learning has become somewhat of a norm giving rise to programs and certifications that are completely online. Nursing is amongst the list of degrees that have been introduced by leading universities across the use. For instance, the University of North Dakota’s online masters in nursing allows healthcare professionals to advance their careers in a flexible and convenient manner.
Rise in prospects
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that in 2021, nurses made a median salary of more than $77,000 a year. In mainstream healthcare facilities like hospitals, for instance, nurses are making even more, with the average being $85,020 per annum. Salaries have increased significantly since 2011. In the last year alone, there has been an increase of roughly $5000 in annual salaries of nurses across the US. As the nurse shortage persists due to an increase in the aging population and diseases, we can see a trend where nursing salaries might continue to rise significantly.
Alternatives being explored to fill the nursing shortage
There are numerous factors about the current population demographics that are driving a nursing shortage, especially across the US. Of the total nurses working right now, close to one-third are expected to retire in the next decade. Moreover, by 2029, Americans over 65 will rise by a staggering 73%, putting more stress on the healthcare system as these individuals require professional care. Amid these developments, there are certain alternatives that are being explored. The American Association of Colleges of Nursing is actively pushing federal regulations and increased funding to grow nursing education. The state of Arizona also dedicated $27 million to the cause of furthering education for prospective nurses.
Rise of Nursing Informatics as an in-demand specialty
Nursing informatics is a specialization combining nursing science with a variety of information and analytical sciences to recognize, characterize, manage, and share data, information, insights, and projections in nursing practice, according to the American Nurses Association. Nursing informatics is a fascinating, expanding subject that is a fantastic fit for nurses with an additional focus on technology. The demand for trained informatics nurses will increase along with the development of digital medical records and telemedicine capabilities.
Delivery mediums for healthcare are also evolving
Telemedicine and the use of digital, remote platforms to deliver effective healthcare is a rapidly rising trend that is being witnessed in the industry. As the role of technology grows, more and more people recognize the benefits it can bring to their lives. In terms of nursing, individuals are also increasingly optimistic about the flexibility and convenience that remote work options will bring to their lives as time progresses. The American Nurses Association has developed guidelines where registered nurses are encouraged to incorporate technology into their way of delivering effective care, revolutionize educational pathways and enhance team-based learning to support this trend.
The growing trend of concierge nursing
The concept of concierge nursing, although fairly new, has risen in popularity quite rapidly. The idea of nurses providing personalized care to a wide variety of patients on a subscription basis offers incredible benefits to both nurses and patients. Through this service, people can call for customized, on-demand care that offers extensive health and wellness options. Nurses can also reap the benefits of additional earnings that come with the flexibility of choosing their own timing as well as the style of healthcare they wish to provide. All they need to do is offer their services through an app or any other online platform.
Enhanced role of nursing practitioners in primary and specialty healthcare
Nursing practitioners are already considered in capacities of primary and secondary healthcare providers in several areas but in major metropolitan cities, that is still not the case. However, times are changing, and the role of nurses is expanding over time. Nurses are able to offer more affordable care in a wide array of capacities without having to put excessive pressure on doctors and physicians who are already overburdened. Nurses are also more easily accessible as compared to qualified specialists.
Travel nursing will shift to hospital premises
During the pandemic, travel nursing rose to prominence (and profitability), costing many hospitals their core nursing staff. Some hospitals are beginning to experiment with in-house programs for travel nurses inside their own facilities to help with recruitment and staffing levels. Through their short-term contracts, more comprehensive base salary, and benefits like health insurance, the structure seems comparable to that of travel nursing. The nurses interested in trying short-term tenures, who desire flexibility in their work but want to stay close to home, or who don't require benefits may gain the most from such programs.
Nurses are critical caregivers with essential responsibilities in modern times. The role of these professionals is imperative to the overall healthcare equation, and with their support, the overall landscape can flourish. There are certain trends outlining the overall direction that nursing as a profession is going to adopt in the coming years. The rising role of technology, the growing effectiveness of telemedicine, and interchanging functions in the field are all indicators of a promising future for the nursing profession.