U.S. nursing shortage hits north Iowa


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MASON CITY, IA – The Affordable Care Act is leading to millions of Americans having health insurance for the first time ever.

This change is leading to a shortage of nurses available to fill the growing number of positions.

Cindy Scott, the employment specialist for Mercy Medical Center North Iowa witnesses this growing demand for professionals in this field of health care.

“For general, entry level, med. surg., we do have opportunities there for new grads so we hope the pool of new grads continues to increase as we feel that we’ll continue to need nurses.”

While nurses are much needed in hospitals across the U.S., the big question now is who will train them?

Donna Orton, the Chair of Health Programs for North Iowa Area Community College (NIACC), takes part in the classroom training aspect for young health care professionals.

“We are concerned not about the numbers of students that come in,” Orton said, “but the fact that we don’t see the appeal for people seeking advanced degrees to go into nursing education.”

Orton believes that money is a real possibility as to why students are hesitant to return to the classroom someday.

“Many nurses go on and get their masters degrees, even their doctorate degrees but they tend not to be as attracted to the education setting as they are to clinical practices,” Orton said.

Donna Orton is thankful that NIACC and other schools in the area are getting their fair share of men and women interested in this particular health care field, but the real concern now lies in finding those wanting to educate others in return.

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