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Problems Facing Nursing Jobs in New South Wales

Discuss about the Professional Portfolio In Australia.

In Australia, most of the hospital registered nurses are sourced majorly by the newly graduated nurses who have completed their Nursing degree.  The retention and recruitment of newly registered nurses are therefore one of the most important considerations in the country care system (Cummins, Denney-Wilson, & Homer, 2016).  Newly registered nurses normally require a great support in their process of transition from students to professional nurses. This is in the alignment of the expectations of any newly registered nurse in Australia. Any newly graduate nurse will wish to be absorbed into the national graduate program which will provide him or her with first begin clinical practice (Cummins, Denney-Wilson, & Homer, 2016).

However, due to government financial problems and other challenges, most new graduate nurses end up failing to get a grad program and thus opt to work in other fields like aged care homes(Jacob, McKenna, & D’Amore, 2014). Those who get may have various challenges like working in states they did not prefer(Jacob, McKenna, & D’Amore, 2014).  Some travel and find other nursing jobs oversea in other countries. This study seeks to demonstrate what literature say about current nursing jobs in New South Wales (NSW), how graduates can get into grad programs and other alternatives, what are the challenges for those who get grad programs in other states and the challenges faced by those who do not get grad programs. In addition, the study seeks to analyses negative and positive effects of working overseas for newly registered nurses, the impact of working in aged care homes other than in hospitals and how the lack of career opportunity affect nursing in Australia.

The Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (ANMF) reported in 2014 that around 3000 nursing graduates usually misses jobs in each year. Due to that reason, ANMF pulled together some nursing and midwifery leaders plus the key stakeholders in nursing employment so as to try and solve the problems facing nursing employment and new graduates absorption in Australia(Jacob, McKenna, & D’Amore, 2014).  In 2016, ANMF conducted a survey and find out that poor and low rate employment of nurses is due to various reasons which include global financial crisis, increase in immigration of labor force, high disconnections between the government and university and hospitals plus poor workforce and planning(Missen, McKenna, & Beauchamp, 2016).  The extent of the problem and how the reduction should be reduced was declared unknown since the government has failed to establish a clear method of employment of newly graduated nurses.

Nursing Grad Programs

As reported by Ms Buttler , the ANMF assistant general in 2015, there has been a failure in negotiations with the government and private employers who currently run graduate programs since they have failed to produce exact number of newly registered graduates they can take in each year , what is the main challenge and how it can be solved out(Missen, McKenna, & Beauchamp, 2016). Up to date, there has been no national framework developed to handle how those graduates will be employed in any state in Australia. Due to those reasons many newly graduate nurses end up having challenges regarding employment or getting a grad program after graduation("Nurses union says 3,000 graduates cannot find work", 2017). In 2014 only there were approximately 15% of all midwifery and nursing graduates that were left unemployed.   According to ANMF, about 60% of graduates in Tasmanian plus 72% in Queensland was left unemployed in 2013("Nurses union says 3,000 graduates cannot find work", 2017). Furthermore, About 400 graduates in Western Australia, 800 graduates in Vitoria and about 280 in South Australia were left without jobs by end of 2013.  In addition, when the government budget is affected, the health industry is normally affected most. This usually results in fewer hospital beds allocation and thus fewer nurses are needed("Nurses union says 3,000 graduates cannot find work", 2017). For example, due to budget cuts in 2011, many hospitals have drastically reduced numbers of beds resulting to very few graduates getting the employment positions("Nurses union says 3,000 graduates cannot find work", 2017).

The grad program in Australia is a yearly transition program where a nurse typically enters into the workforce. The transition program is important to newly registered nurses since it adds practical skills to nurses so that they can be competent enough to become professional nurses. Currently, there are high numbers of newly registered nurses in the country which have led to an increase competition to the already available placement(Cummins, Denney-Wilson, & Homer, 2016). The major benefit of most of the transition programs is that they provide high chances of employment retention thus those who get such chances tend to have minimal stress in securing jobs(Ray, Zupper, Lincoln, & Snyder, 2015).

There are two major ways to find those graduate programs in Australia. First and most common is by online application service of which all newly graduate nurses apply through the gradconnect services. The other is by directly applying to a hospital that is not in the grad connect list since it does not mean they do not offer grad programs(Ray, Zupper, Lincoln, & Snyder, 2015). The GradConnect consist of all hospitals and health care services participating in the grad program(Cummins, Denney-Wilson, & Homer, 2016). For one to eligible to a graduate program, one must be in his final year of university completion or has all qualification of a newly registered nurse(Walker, Earl, Costa, & Cuddihy, 2013). The following details are needed in the process of application; Copy of identification card, a photo of identification, evidence of residency in Australia, contact details, completed clinical reports, immunization reports, and referees.  Graduates then are subjected to a face to face interview where the following are checked; interests to patient care and welfare, ability to demonstrate learned skills into clinical practice, professionalism and ability to follow rules and ethics(Walker, Earl, Costa, & Cuddihy, 2013).

Alternatives to Grad Programs

It is important to perform a good research to where a newly registered nurse wishes to have a grad program.  Some hospital has a metro- rural exchange programs where one spend six months in the metro facility and six months in the rural facility. Others have specialty nursing exchange programs where a graduate will spend six months in general practice nursing and six months in mental or aged care setting. Registered nurses are expected to select four clinical areas in which they will major during the grad program.


Unsuccessful applicants into the grad programs always have other alternatives where they can apply to other healthcare organizations such as private hospitals, aged care facilities as well as disability care facilities(Stanley, 2014). This is one of the most stress full situations for any newly graduated nurse as those other organizations do not have a promising job security as the grad programs(Stanley, 2014). In addition to that, there are few eligible private organizations and aged care facilities that can provide a newly graduate with the required experience, knowledge and skills for a better transition in a professional nurse.

Aged care facilities have become one of the major areas where those who fail to get a grad program tend to practice (Walker, & Paliadelis, 2016). This is due to the fact that there is an increasingly aging population in Australia thus new nursing opportunities are been generated day in day out (Walker, & Paliadelis, 2016). Most of the aged care facilities give adequate support to newly graduated nurses including the debriefing sessions, ongoing education and adequate practice (Walker, & Paliadelis, 2016). However, old care facilities have the monotonous practice where graduates normally spend their transition period dealing with aged patients only who are suffering from chronic diseases. In addition, the scope of practice is also wide with no specific allocations(Walker, & Paliadelis, 2016).

The other problem that may arise with grad program is when one is posted to a different state other than the current state. Moving to a different area normally is accompanied by problems with housing and neighborhoods ("Working Virtually", 2015).  Different states have different environments which may predispose some graduates into diseases. Other than that, beginning a new socialization and adoption to new rules and policies is hectic and stressful. In addition, those nurses who get interstate grad programs are usually separated from their families thus reducing a family bond which is important in human beings ("Working Virtually", 2015).

Working in Aged Care Facilities

The transition from newly registered nurses into professional nurses is a challenging process where in some cases about 50% of new graduates normally left their first position within the first year. Most of the phenomena in clinical settings are extremely shocking although they are also part of the transition (Osborne, 2014). The current nursing practices have demonstrated that there are a lot of challenges and frustrations to newly registered nurses working in hospital settings. In Australia, new graduates either in the grad programs or private sectors are expected to demonstrate evidence-based learning into practice (Osborne, 2014). Although the graduates have finished the minimum requirements and competencies to enter into practice, various studies suggest that new graduates normally lack enough judgment and clinical skills to provide competent and safe practice(Hamilton, 2013).

In that case, newly registered nurses are normally under supervision. Practical educator nurses and more expert nurses with experience are the ones who offers support to newly graduate ("Careers & Jobs", 2013).  Graduates working in hospitals grad programs must understand the roles of professionalism and what they should do in the hospital and what they should not do as within their scope of practice(Hamilton, 2013). Newly registered nurses should have enough theoretical knowledge and be ready to demonstrate into practice showing high levels of interests and eagerness to learn from experienced nurses and other health care professionals ("Careers & Jobs", 2013). In addition to that, new graduates should be able to understand that there are traumatic phenomena in the hospital and should learn on how to cope with them professionally. In addition, newly registered nurses have an obligation to practice within the standard of practice demonstrating clear communication and understanding of clinical practice (Osborne, 2014).

Some of the qualified Australian nurses tend to look to career opportunities oversea to expand their clinical experience and to earn more. Unlike in Australia, some countries like in the Middle East countries which include the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia offers good tax-free income with furnished accommodation and subsidized airfare(Kishi, Inoue, Crookes, & Shorten, 2014). Others countries like Sweden have high job absorption rate making nursing jobs in such countries convenient and less stressing.  In the United Kingdom, agent nursing is common and most nurses have a variety of options making the health industry to be very marketable and flexible(Kishi, Inoue, Crookes, & Shorten, 2014). Some of the benefits why nurses tend to work overseas include becoming experts in international nursing, earning more money while still seeing the world, enjoying a different type of working conditions and finally returning o fresh work opportunities. In addition, working in oversea as a young nurse normally propels your career faster as compared to working in Australia (Pickersgill, 2012).

Lack of Career Opportunities in Nursing

However, all oversea opportunities need thorough investigations before making any arrangement in traveling. Some of the midwifery conditions may include working with people suffering from HIV, poor working conditions and in areas with other highly infectious diseases (Pickersgill, 2012). In addition to that, various countries have different cultures and some like in the Middle East have strong Islamic laws that can make one not to enjoy most of his free will.  In addition, when nurses leave for other career opportunities to other countries their jobs in Australia are terminated and can only come back to start a fresh (Osborne, 2014).

Conclusion

Nursing jobs in Australia are scarce and highly competitive. Due to that reason, each and every year hundreds of graduates are left unemployed. The grad program was established to allow nurses to practice in the transition period and at the same time securing a future place to work. However, getting a grad program in Australia is a problem since not all students are taken. Those who are taken can work interstate which is a problem due to many inconveniences. Those newly graduates nurses who do not get the grad programs tend to work in aged care facilities which normally provide less experience.  Working as a newly graduate nurse is different since they are under supervision and are not expected to have wide knowledge in clinical decision making. Some nurses tend to work overseas due to the fact that there are numerous advantages like free tax income, availability of work and flexibility of jobs.

References

Careers & Jobs. (2009). Nursing Standard, 23(40), 62-63.dx.doi.org/10.7748/ns.23.40.62.s58

Cummins, A., Denney-Wilson, E., & Homer, C. (2016). The mentoring experiences of new graduate midwives working in midwifery continuity of care models in Australia. Nurse Education In Practice. https://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.nepr.2016.01.003

Hamilton, H. (2013). New graduate identity: Discursive mismatch. Contemporary Nurse, 20(1),

67-77..doi.org/10.5172/conu.20.1.67 Jacob, E., McKenna, L., & D’Amore, A. (2014). Senior nurse role expectations of graduate

registered and enrolled nurses in Australia: Content analysis of open-ended survey questions. Contemporary Nurse, 48(2), 212-218.doi.org/10.1080/10376178.2014.11081943

Kishi, Y., Inoue, K., Crookes, P., & Shorten, A. (2014). A Model of Adaptation of Overseas Nurses. Journal Of Transcultural Nursing, 25(2), 183-191.doi.org/10.1177/1043659613515716

Missen, K., McKenna, L., & Beauchamp, A. (2016). Graduate Nurse Program Coordinators perspectives on graduate nurse programs in Victoria, Australia: A descriptive qualitative approach. Collegian, 23(2), 201-208.doi.org/10.1016/j.colegn.2015.03.004

Nurses union says 3,000 graduates cannot find work. (2017). ABC News. Retrieved, from https://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-05-24/thousands-of-nursing-graduates-unable-to-find-work/5475320

Osborne, K. (2014). Lack of hospital handover is making our jobs harder, say district nurses. Nursing Standard, 28(40), 9-9.doi.org/10.7748/ns.28.40.9.s7

Pickersgill, F. (2012). Opportunity awaits abroad. Nursing Standard, 26(26), 62-63.

.doi.org/10.7748/ns2012.02.26.26.62.p7705 Ray, N., Zupper, S., Lincoln, M., & Snyder, J. (2015). Graduate Nurse to PACU Nurse Resident:

Developing an In-Depth Orientation for the Graduate Nurse. Journal Of Perianesthesia Nursing, 30(4), e29.doi.org/10.1016/j.jopan.2015.05.079

Smith, C., Fisher, C., & Mercer, A. (2011). Rediscovering nursing: A study of overseas nurses working in Western Australia. Nursing & Health Sciences, no-no.doi.org/10.1111/j.1442-2018.2011.00613.x

Stanley, D. (2014). Perceptions Of Clinical Leadership In An Aged Care Residential Facility In Perth, Western Australia. Health Care: Current Reviews, 02(02).doi.org/10.4172/2375-4273.1000122

Walker, A., Earl, C., Costa, B., & Cuddihy, L. (2013). Graduate nurses' transition and integration

into the workplace: A qualitative comparison of graduate nurses' and Nurse Unit Managers' perspectives. Nurse Education Today, 33(3), 291-296. https://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.nedt.2012.06.005

Walker, H., & Paliadelis, P. (2016). Older peoples’ experiences of living in a residential aged care facility in Australia. Australasian Journal On Ageing, 35(3), E6-E10. .doi.org/10.1111/ajag.12325

Working Virtually. (2015). Clinical Nurse Specialist, 29(2), 64-65.doi.org/10.1097/nur.0000000000000116

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