IntroductionCreating a clear knowledge of factors that contribute to nursing attrition and recognition of changes that would promote qualified staff to go back to, or enter into aged care workforce is crucial to attain future healthcare requirements. According to Hinshaw and Grady (2010), aged care has been viewed for along period of time as nursing’s low status area. Long-term aged care currently has been custodial in nature. An excellent understanding of what causes attrition within the aged care nursing workforce and the incentives that will promote qualified staff to go back to workforce is crucial in attaining future health care requirements.
A number of studies that examine the main reasons why there is shortages in aged care nursing have been identified by several health professionals. Several articles that address key issues and plans of tackling current shortage of aged care nurses have also been published (Dani, 2008). Issues surrounding Retention of qualified nurses in aged careThe main issue in retention and recruitment of nurses is the nature of aged care. Aged care is normally viewed as a field in which there is little chances of curing patients and looking after them as they recover from medical problems.
New graduates therefore always select acute care because of chances of providing short-term care that normally leads to positive outcomes. This contradicts with lasting residential aged care homes in which organization rather than cure and palliative care’s provision is common. Lack of collegiality is also a factor that contributes to long term shortage of nursing. Lack of collegiality is normally realized in acute medical-settings because of relative physicians’ absence and other health care experts, incorporating other registered nurses on similar shifts (Watson & Manthorpe, 2003).
The enhancing stress and duties that are experienced when working with and supervising an enhanced number of unqualified nursing employees is an essential issue in retention of qualified nurses within the aged care setting. The focus groups’ results that were held with nurses of residential aged care to check the perception of nurses about nursing assistants showed that nurses have a positive view about nursing assistants and their job. It was established that good nursing assistants are essential in the provision of quality care.
Nurses however are experiencing displeasure and stress that is usually linked with the role of supervising assistants. This therefore is normally examined in relation to unpredictable assistants’ performance and nurses’ subjective assessments of assistant performance that might make supervision hard and sometimes unsuccessful. Nurses normally express difficulties on their job performance as it depends on assistance from low class nursing home employees. This as a result, might cause uncertainty on assistants and nurses reluctance in supervising the assistants (Scanlon, 2001 pp). Workplace condition is another issue that surrounds retention of nurses in aged care setting.
A number of studies and reports have examined several workplace conditions that contribute to high levels of attrition within the aged care. As far as recruitment and retention of nurses within the aged care is concerned, it is not essential to take into account employment within the private nursing home because of conditions of work that are encountered by nurses in several private nursing homes. The work conditions faced includes continual changing of verbal contracts rather than setting employment contracts, promises for continual study chances, pay and holiday situations that are not attained, absence of holiday pay, precedence for profit instead of quality care, lack of qualifications among proprietors, employees, equipment and resources scarcity and finally unfair dismissals.
These working conditions can make several nurses to dislike working in private aged care (ACEBCN, 2002 p. 49).