Technological advancements keep occurring in the healthcare sector continuously, which keeps it in a state of flux. Different factors impact healthcare evolution, like systemic racism and the economy. Additionally, the pandemic of COVID-19 brought more complex challenges for nurses that do not seem to go anywhere soon. This global pandemic has affected people’s lives worldwide and showed nurses’ worth in the whole care ecosystem.
This global pandemic is a burden on the healthcare system and a test for nurses who are serving patients day and night by putting their lives at stake. If you are just starting your nursing career, it might be the most challenging time of your professional career. As a frontline worker, you have to provide necessary care to the patients and protect yourself from the deadly virus. With millions of infections and deaths due to coronavirus, the role of nurses has become more critical than ever before. Let’s take a look at where nursing stands in 2021.
1. Shortage of Nurses
The nursing shortage can create more job opportunities, but it can be very costly in the current scenario. The recent research studies show that the nursing field is the area of top growth till 2022 due to the current pandemic. But nurses are reportedly facing difficulty to get hired despite the shortage, and low salaries are one of the significant reasons. Nurses face this issue due to budget constraints, and even nursing director salaries require more attention. The shortage is also due to staffing issues, making it further difficult for healthcare sectors to deal with the pandemic.
2. Challenges Of Dealing With COVID-19
There is a high risk of burnout during the COVID-19 crises for nurses. The never-ending anxiety and exhaustion due to their constant duty can wear them down. It can affect the performance of nurses, which should be an alarming situation for healthcare authorities. Challenges like dealing with illnesses and the prevention of the current virus also concern nurses. It is crucial to address these issues for the sake of nurses’ stable mental and physical health. Their perfect state of mind is vital while they are serving their duties on the frontline.
3. Systemic Racism In Healthcare
One of the main challenges that nurses are facing today is systemic racism in healthcare. After the murder of George Floyd and the start of the Black Lives Matter movement, the healthcare system also felt its effects. Nurses of different races often face unfair systemic workplace practices that should be identified and addressed. The National Black Nurses Association (NBNA) also expressed their concerns about treating nurses equally on merit. According to a survey, Latino and Black nurses were more likely to be in roles providing care to the coronavirus patients directly than White nurses, resulting in them being twice as likely to bediagnosed with COVID-19.
Racism is a public health matter that affects the mental and physical health of the individual. It does not align with the code of ethics for any healthcare worker. It is important for every professional working in the healthcare sector to speak up against injustice and discrimination based on color or creed. Nurses should be encouraged to step up and speak for their rights if they face any racism at any level. They are the most trusted and valued professionals by the general public, so they are like to have huge support no matter what.
4. Adapting ToThe Technological Changes
The constantly changing technological developments are bringing new challenges for nurses. They have to go through different procedures while applying for jobs, completing applications, or uploading resumes. The application tracking system then scans these applications and rejects them if it does not find the required keywords. It is important for nurses to know what keywords the system is actually looking for. If nurses’ resumes get passed through the system, they have to record their video interviews.
With artificial intelligence improving day by day, we can expect more modified hiring processes. Similarly, there are also new tools and gadgets emerging continuously that are used for diagnosis and to provide necessary care to patients. Nurses also have to keep an eye on these latest advancements to fulfill their activities efficiently without facing any hurdles.
5. Adjusting In Online Education
Online learning has brought convenience to the lives of many people. However, it can also be difficult for nurses who have to attend the classes remotely and take care of their children or other family membersas well. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, remote working and learning have brought new challenges. However, despite the many challenges they face due to their continually demanding jobs, nurses are still getting enrolled in online education to pursue higher education comparatively easily. This is so they can upgrade their skills and serve the healthcare industry better, which is a commendable move we should appreciate heartily.
Every challenge brings a new opportunity to showcase your skills and worth. Nurses have proved their worth in the healthcare industry by fighting the battle against COVID-19 as frontline soldiers. They have shown that sincerity and passion for the job can push you to come out of your comfort zone to fulfill your responsibilities efficiently. Without the support of nurses, doctors and medical experts can’t treat patients easily. It is the responsibility of the healthcare sector to address the issues that nurses face and reward them according to what they truly deserve.
As a nurse, you have to overcome some challenges yourself, like adapting to the latest technology trends and getting help for overcoming the anxiety and burnout issues. It will help you focus on your job without any distractions. Nurses are known to be natural problem solvers, so they are well equipped to find multiple solutions. They possess critical thinking and emotional intelligence to analyze the situation and act accordingly. So, you just need to identify your weaknesses and find ways to strengthen them to prepare yourself for future challenges. It will help you perform your duties perfectly by finding the right solutions for the problems.
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