Florida struggles with nursing shortage


November 16, 2010

The continuing needs of senior citizens, coupled with the aging baby boomer generation, could lead to a severe shortage in nursing care in Florida, according to Florida Today.

By 2025, there could be a deficit of more than 50,000 registered nurses and 12,600 licensed practical nurses. This will have a lasting impact on everything from nursing homes to hospices.

This year's healthcare reform legislation will also add weight to the problem, because millions more patients will enter the system and require care.

Some experts in the field are trying to promote nursing programs in schools, so that there will be new medical professionals who will be prepared to deal with these numbers.

"We have to create more partnerships with education with our communities over the next five years to meet those needs," Edwin Loftin, vice president of nursing at Parrish Medical Center, told the news provider.

A lack of nurses could also mean less medical home care aides in the future. Those who are looking to ensure the safety of a loved one may want to install a senior alert system in the residence. This device can allow an older adult to instantly send a personal emergency response message to a hospital if assistance is required.