Colorado is dealing with a nursing shortage that is only expected to get worse over the next few years.
According to the Colorado Center for Nursing Excellence, Colorado has about 61,000 nurses.
Of those nurses, 32% are over the age of 55 and 4,500 are over the age of 65. Furthermore, it’s expected that the growing demand for nurses in the state will increase in the next decade.
In fact, a recent study by Mercer predicts the state will be short 10,000 nurses by 2026. That is why schools like UCCS are working to fill the state’s gaps through the school’s nursing program. I spoke with a nursing student at the school who says her workload isn’t easy, but her passion inspires her to stick with it.
“The main point of nursing is your heart. You have to care for your patients and love them. I would rather have a nurse who cares for me versus she is so talented and can do anything,” said Katherine Joiner. “I’ve always been interested in medicine and helping others ever since I was a little girl but I’m finally able to pursue a nursing career and I love it because there are so many different options. I can do surgery; I can do emergency. There are so many options out there.”
The Colorado Department of Human Services is offering $2,000-7,000 hiring incentives. The incentives will be given in three payments over 270 days. Click here for more information.
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