The Australian newspapaer reports today that a 450 page report from our top health workforce advisory body warns we face a shortage of 109,000 nurses (27% of the workforce) and 2,700 doctors by 2025.
The report by Health Workforce Australia was released after a meeting of federal, state and territory health ministers in Canberra yesterday.
The ministers said it showed that “without strong reform intervention these estimates will mean services may be unsustainable”.
The report estimated the extent to which a number of policy scenarios might affect the workforce projections and found retention measures held the most promise in nursing, reducing the workforce gap by an estimated 82 per cent for registered nurses and 66 per cent for enrolled nurses.
This is an impending perfect storm, where an aging population that will place rapidly increasing demands on the health system collides with a doctor and nurse depleted health system that is under-resourced to manage it.
Ironically, I hear plenty plenty anecdotal stories from newgrads frustrated that they are unable to find employment…..colliding with the situation of deeply experienced staff forced to leave the clinical areas due to poor working conditions, lack of professional development support, insifficient pay, burnout and under-recognition of their skills.
The perfect anti-storm.