Hearings needed on nursing shortage, group says

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An independent group of healthcare leaders has recently asked the Bush administration to hold hearings to address the current and impending shortage of nurses and physicians. 

A total of 30,000 more nurses need to graduate annually in order fix the shortage, according to the Council on Physician and Nurse Supply, a nationwide consortium of healthcare professionals. It cites figures from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing showing that at least 30,000 prospective nursing students were turned away in 2006 due to a lack of faculty.  

The group, which is based at the University of Pennsylvania, maintains that America needs to re-evaluate the way in which nurses and doctors are educated to ensure the country has the healthcare professionals it needs. The shrinking interest in geriatrics and gerontology is of special concern to the long-term care providers.