The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has projected that 555,100 RNs and APRNs will retire or otherwise leave the labor force by 2022—a tsunami of RN retirements. This is due in large part to a historical confluence of events that produced an otherwise incomparable “super-cohort” of RNs that entered the profession from 1978 to 1987. Because of their initial set of retirements, the number of RNs needed to fully staff healthcare industries is virtually double the number of increased jobs due to expanded demand from new patients wanting new services. The nation will need to produce 1.13 million new RNs to fill both the expansion jobs and the replacements, and find ways for the new RNs to gain the experience that will be lost in the tsunami.
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