Nurses at MCG Health call career in nursing recession proof

By: Shalah Sasse Email
By: Shalah Sasse Email

News 12 This Morning, March 31, 2009

AUGUSTA, Ga.-- With a huge shortage of nurses in the United States, Steven Whitney says there will always be opportunities for work.

"Nursing has always been just solid, as a career is concerned," Steven Whitney said.

Whitney has been a nurse since 1991. He's played many roles, pediatric nurse, adult trauma, and critical care.

"I know that I will always have a job, and also not only a job, but a well-paying job," Whitney said.

In Georgia, the starting salary for a hospital nurse is between $45-50,000 a year. MCG Health says health care is growing and there will always be a need for nurses.

"We're always going to need a hospital setting, people are always going to be sick. People are always going to get hurt, so they're always going to need a nurse," Jennifer Edmunds said.

Dr. Lucy Marion is the Dean of the School of Nursing at the Medical College of Georgia and says that even in this economy, the vast majority of nursing positions are secure.

"I think that there's a major drive right now because of the economic conditions. And people who have perhaps thought about being a nurse in the past are rethinking," Dr. Lucy Marion said.

Dr. Marion says enrollment for nursing school is up in Georgia and nationwide. She says nationwide it's up 2.2% from last year. She says to meet the workforce needs for the nation, they need 30,000 more RN's per year.

"Nurses are the backbone to the healthcare system. They by far are the most of the largest group of health care providers in the nation," Dr. Marion said.


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