عنوان مقاله [English]
Introduction: Nurses are considered to be among the most important groups in providing health services, and effectiveness of the health systems is dependent on the optimal activity of this profession. Regarding nursing shortage, as a world challenge, this study aimed to assess the nursing shortage concept, the reasons and consequences behind this problem and strategies to solve it.
Material and Methods: This review study was performed using authentic scientific resources in the data bases of PubMed, Science Direct, SID and Google Scholar and reports of scientific organizations during 2000-2014.
Results: Nursing shortage concept was varied based on the work scope and geographical region, and depended on the balance of supply and demand of forces. The main reasons for nursing shortage included the change in demographical characteristics of people, emerging of new diseases, emigration, and failure in policies related to recruitment and retention of nurses. The outcomes of nursing shortage included increasing workload, job dissatisfaction, high professional error, leaving the work place and mortality of patients. To overcome nursing shortage, issues such as increasing student recruitment, changes in employment policies, decentralization of health systems and increasing salary of nurses had been expressed in the studies.
Conclusion: Based on the results of this study, adequacy of nursing forces in the healthcare system has a direct relationship with patients’ satisfaction and reduction of mortality rates. Therefore, by identifying nursing shortage factors and developing comprehensive policies about staff recruitment and retention a step forward in resolving nursing shortage and strengthening the health care system will be taken.