Posts

Unitek College logo

California Needs More Nurses

After looking at many news sites for the past few months, a reoccurring theme is the shortage of nurses that are projected for the future. California continues to have a population growth spurt, but budget cuts in higher education have greatly impacted the number of nurses that are projected for the future. Many nurses are choosing to get their LVN certifications rather than enter an RN program or BSN degree due to both financial cost on behalf of the students and budget cutbacks in the educational systems.

According to Randy M. Caine on sfgate.com, “Since the start of the state’s Nurse Education Initiative in 2005, California has thankfully seen a 78.7 percent increase in new student enrollments as a result of opening 35 additional nursing programs. But California is still scrambling to get out of the nursing shortage hole and, in the 2008-09 academic year, saw the increase of new enrollments slow.

“California falls short of the national average of 825 registered nurses employed per 100,000 population. With just 653 registered nurses employed per 100,000, the state’s nursing shortage will climb to 80,000 by 2015.”

One major factor contributing to the nursing shortage is the vacancies in the faculty departments that are not being filled. Not only are there shortages in professors, but budget cuts are causing cutbacks in education and more faculty members are not being hired. Caine comments that, “California was forced to turn nearly 23,000 qualified applicants away from nursing programs during the 2008-2009 academic year.

“As a nursing professor at California State University at Los Angeles until 2008, I saw highly qualified students being turned away simply because we didn’t have the staff to teach them. I saw students who had to worry about their program being offered the following year, and I saw faculty members who didn’t know if they would get a paycheck.”
Most interesting in Caine’s article was the statement, “We should not view today as a lull in the need for nurses, but as the calm before the storm…Many have closed their eyes to the ripple effect of today’s nursing shortage, but it is impossible to discuss the need for more nurses without looking to how this will change the future of health care.”

For more information, please go to:

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/02/04/EDQP1HIIDK.DTL

Unitek College logo

Colleges Not Producing Enough Health Care Workers

It seems like every week Google posts a news report saying that there is a huge shortage of health care workers. This week is no different as a survey covered by MercuryNews.com was posted.
According to reporter Neil Gonzales, “community colleges statewide are unable to produce enough of these professionals — who include nursing aides, respiratory therapists and medical assisting — largely because of inadequate funding… The survey involved college deans across California, including those from Peninsula and South Bay schools Cañada, Skyline College in San Bruno, De Anza College in Cupertino, West Valley College in Saratoga and San Jose City College.”
With many schools, the problem lies within budget cuts; there is a long waiting list for students to enter into health care programs, but colleges are unable to hire more professors and add classes due to the lack of finances. Gonzales also relates that, “limited classroom space and the inability to hire instructors given severe budget constraints in recent years, the survey indicated. Another issue is a lack of clinical space where students can experience hands-on training at a hospital or other medical site to finish their coursework, the survey said.”
There are several reasons why these programs are impacted. The first is that the success rate of graduating and finding a job is highly plausible. The second is that the pay in the health industry is competitive.
“Colleges have teamed up with medical employers and other groups to improve students’ access to clinical work, deans said, but more of those partnerships are needed,” commented Gonzales. “If the health-care community wants to increase students in (allied health), they have to step up and say, ‘We need your graduates, and we can train them,'” Janet Stringer, dean of science and technology at Cañada said.
“But Stephanie Sherman, dean of biology, health and environmental sciences at De Anza, said there’s enough of that collaboration going on, and what’s really called for is additional funding — something unlikely to happen given the $400 million in cuts proposed in the state budget for community colleges in the 2011-12 fiscal year,” quotes Gonzales.
If you are looking to enter the health care industry as a pharmacy technician, medical assistanting or nurse in the San Francisco Bay Area, Santa Clara or Sacramento, Unitek College may be the answer you’re looking for. Avoid long waiting lists and drawn out programs and start on the path to your future today.

For more information, please go to:
http://www.mercurynews.com/san-mateo-county/ci_17232130?source=most_emailed

Unitek College logo

Nurses Doing Their Part for the Environment

          Working in the medical field, it’s obvious that the equipment and supplies that are used on a patient must be sterile. The seemingly most convenient way to do this is with individually wrapped surgical trays, syringes and bandages to name just a few. Some nurses have asked the critical question, “but what is all this waste doing to our environment?” Now there is a way to care for your patients and the environment in which we live.
          Linda Childers from Nurse.com found a unique group of nurses who are doing something to change the current amount of waste that is thrown away each day in the operating room. “When Christine Collins, RN, an OR nurse at Kaiser Permanente’s Roseville (Calif.) Medical Center, finishes assisting with a surgical procedure, she immediately disposes of the blue wrap that is used to cover, wrap and store sterilized equipment and to outfit nurses and surgeons during operations.”
          According to the March 2010 journal Academic Medicine, hospitals dispose of more than four billion pounds of waste per year. Where once medical kits were packaged in cloth, now everything seems to be wrapped in plastic. “At first,” Collins says, “nurses were delighted by an invention that offered the convenience of one-time use and was safe for patients, but as years passed, she and her colleagues became concerned about the sheer number of blue wrap thrown away on a daily basis.”
          Childers explains that, “A nursing colleague told Collins about the Legacy Health System in Oregon that had been recycling blue wrap for the past decade, turning the OR staple into recycled wash buckets, lawn furniture, flowerpots, squirt bottles, plastic lumber for picnic tables and thousands of other commonly used products.” Collins and her colleagues now recycle approximately 2,500 pounds each month which adds up to about 32,500 pounds each year. Imagine if every hospital did this! Childers is also expanding the materials that she is trying to recycle. ““We’re now trying to capture all the clean plastics that are thrown in the trash from the OR,” Collins says. “This includes bottles that contain sterile water and saline, plain IV bags and outer wrappers, to our packs that our drapes come in.”
           If you’re interested in becoming part of the medical field in the San Francisco Bay Area, Santa Clara or Sacramento, look into Unitek College. In a short amount of time you can receive a quality education to get you on your way to a new career. Change you world in ways you never dreamed possible!

For more information, please go to:
http://news.nurse.com/article/20110110/CA02/101100056