Staff shortage – Nearly 6,000 nursing positions need to be filled

Staff shortage – Nearly 6,000 nursing positions need to be filled
Staff shortage – Nearly 6,000 nursing positions need to be filled

Posted18 October 2021, 06:02

The health sector is sounding the alarm. Exhausted, motivated young people often hang up their blouses.

Intensive care center at Geneva University Hospitals (HUG), August 31, 2021.

20min / Marvin Ancian

No other sector has as many vacancies as the health sector, reports the “SonntagsZeitung”. According to the latest figures, 5,761 nursing jobs are currently to be filled. An absolute record. At the same period in 2019, they were 4,716, at the start of the same year only 3,626.

The x28 company analyzed the current data. The finding: the situation is due to an overload of work, exhaustion and the frustration of healthcare staff since the pandemic. “With each wave, we had hoped that our team would be increased. But nothing happened, laments a specialist nurse. Today, we are facing the fourth wave and we have less staff than in the first. ”

Increased risk of errors

Yvonne Ribi, of the Swiss Association of Nurses (ASI), is alarmed by the number of people who hang up their gowns because they no longer see any prospects: “We are told about services where nearly half of the nurses experienced teams have left. ” Hence an increase in the burden for those who remain and, above all, the risk of errors: “With the current situation, it is almost impossible to maintain the quality of care required”, she laments.

Widely supported initiative

On November 28, the people will vote on the nursing initiative. It requires an offensive in terms of training, better working conditions to prevent people from leaving the profession, and more nurses on the teams to guarantee the quality of care. According to a Tamedia survey, six weeks before the vote, the percentage of favorable opinions is 82%.

The Federal Council and the Parliament consider that the initiative goes too far and the Parliament adopted an indirect counter-project. This plans for the Confederation and the cantons to invest nearly a billion francs in the training of nursing staff over the next eight years. The counter-proposal, however, does not provide for new regulations on working conditions and wages.

The latest national healthcare report highlights the seriousness of the situation, reports the “SonntagsZeitung”. Today, 185,600 people work as nurses in Spitex hospitals, retirement homes, nursing homes and home care. But by 2029, 222,100 nurses will be needed to meet demand, i.e. nearly 40,000 more. And it will take as much to replace pre-retirees and retirees. The crux of the matter: although the cantons are training twice as many nurses as ten years ago, they are still far too few.

“Instead of taking care of young people motivated to do such training, they are exhausted,” says Samuel Burri, nursing specialist at Unia union. More than a third of them drop out at the end of their training. “The workload is just immense.” With the consequence that many nurses suffer from back pain or joints, 70% of them have problems sleeping and almost half feel exhausted, showed a survey conducted by Unia among 3,500 helpers. – caregivers. “The system has reached its limits,” laments Mr. Burri.



Staff shortage nursing positions filled

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