The early results of a statewide survey of nurses shows the profession is going to need some extra help in the years to come. Over 77,000 of the state’s registered nurses took part in the survey, which was ordered as part of the last state budget.
Department of Workforce Development Secretary Roberta Gassman says the results show most of the state’s nurses are over the age of 45, which puts them above the average age of the rest of Wisconsin’s workforce. State officials estimated Wisconsin will need as many as 8,000 nurses by 2018 to replace the aging workforce.
Responses also show that only about half of Wisconsin’s nurses are working in actual hospitals, with the rest in places such as clinics or community health centers. Gassman says that shows the demand for nurses will be in diverse settings.
Officials released early findings from the survey this week. Gassman says the information will be vital in planning for ways to make sure new nurses are being trained to replace those nearing retirement. That likely will include expanding access to training and improving working conditions to keep current nurses from leaving the profession.
A report with recommendations based on the survey findings is expected next year.