Many nurses are leaving the hospital environment but staying within health care.
Some are returning to school for advanced degrees while still others are seeking other non-nursing positions for more money. There are several things that hospitals can do to keep nurses including hiring adequate staff to reduce physical and mental stress.
For the aging nurse population it is important to consider reduced work hour options such as changing 12-hour shifts to 8 hours or shared scheduling where two nurses work six hours each of a 12-hour shift. For all nurses the need to provide resources to reduce back injuries is important. Hospitals should provide either equipment or people to assist with lifting and moving patients.
From a professional perspective, nurses should be included in the decision-making process, be given appropriate autonomy for their practice, and encouraged to advance their education. The primary goal is to improve the work environment and create a situation