Estimates show health care system is short 9,000 nurses

According to estimates, Slovakia needs approximately 9,000 nurses and this shortage is felt most acutely by smaller hospitals, Maria Levayová, president of the Slovak Chamber of Nurses and Birth Assistants (SKSaPA), told the TASR newswire on October 1.

According to estimates, Slovakia needs approximately 9,000 nurses and this shortage is felt most acutely by smaller hospitals, Maria Levayová, president of the Slovak Chamber of Nurses and Birth Assistants (SKSaPA), told the TASR newswire on October 1.

The shortage results in overexertion of medical personnel, which may have a negative effect on both the workers and patients, she said, adding that the main reasons for nurses leaving their jobs is their overexertion. The migration of nurses is, according to Levayová, caused in the first place by their physical and psychological strain and burn-out, while financial and social standing comes in second.

Therefore, nurses and birth assistants want to be allowed to retire early.

"We reiterate that the average age of nurses and birth assistants in Slovakia is 45 years, and 28 percent of medical workers are people in retirement," Levayová said.

The number of graduates in these areas is also falling. Annually, there are 4 nurses per 100,000 inhabitants finishing nursing school, while the EU average is 31/100,000.

"There are approximately 300 graduates entering the system each year, but at least 1,200 is needed (to meet the needs of the health care system)," Levayová said. TASR

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.

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