More than 80% of nursing homes in the United States reported experiencing staffing shortages in early 2023, potentially affecting the care provided to over a million elderly residents. According to Dr. Jasmine Travers of New York University Rory Meyers College of Nursing, these shortages lead to increased emergency hospital visits, pressure ulcers, urinary tract infections, falls, and other health complications among nursing home residents. The lower staffing levels also mean residents may wait longer for assistance, increasing the risk of falls and infections.
Addressing the staffing crisis requires a multifaceted approach, including loan reimbursements and forgiveness for staff working in underserved areas, improved wages and benefits, and enhanced retention efforts. These strategies aim to attract new staff and retain existing employees, as consistency and familiarity with residents improve the overall quality of care.
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