Slow Increase of Nurses despite Growing Demand Skip to content

Slow Increase of Nurses despite Growing Demand

The increase of young nurses hired at the National Hospital of Iceland has been slow for the past three years despite growing demand for qualified professionals due to increased operations in various departments.

The demand has therefore been met with more hours of overtime and nurses currently working at the National Hospital have to cope with heavier workload, especially at departments where long-term patients stay, because employees working there have been relocated to other departments, Morgunbladid reports.

The labor turnover among nurses at the National Hospital was 10 percent in 2006. Many nurses quit because they had reached retirement age (67). The average age of nurses at the hospital is rather high and 250 other nurses will reach that age within the next seven years.

The reason for this slow increase is dissatisfaction with wages among nurses, who prefer working elsewhere than at the hospital, like at banks, which is possible for them due to low unemployment rates in Iceland.

According to the conclusion of an enquiry undertaken by National Hospital on the staffing of nurses, it is important to make the profession more appealing to young graduates by improving wages as well as offering more variety to persuade nurses who have reached retirement age to continue working.

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