The Global Nurse Workforce


The issues surrounding the global nurse workforce have made it one of the current trends in the field of healthcare. The current medical environment has many laws, regulations, and policies enforced by the government, institutions, and insurers in the private sector which have constrained the health care sector between offering quality healthcare and cost of the health care. Additionally, the cost of healthcare continues to rise, affecting both the management of medical facilities and access to healthcare by the patients. The rise in the cost of health care, variable quality, and the deteriorating access has made the healthcare institutions lobby for support from the government through the legislators and the local government to improve the delivery of healthcare services at an affordable charge (Jones & Sherwood, 2014). Nurses wish to see extensive changes in the policies that relate to healthcare issues; that’s why they seek government intervention. Some of the problems affecting the global nurse workforce include migration, education, clinical outcomes, and health disparities. To deal with such concerns as well as the workplace issues that implicate the overall performance of the healthcare system, nurses feel victimized by the circumstances and; therefore, seek financial support from government to improve their working conditions so that they provide effective healthcare services. On top of the financial aid, the legislators also need to enact policies that can maintain the nursing workforce (Buchan et al., 2015).

Reason for Choosing the Global Nurse Workforce as a Current Trend in Nursing

The reasons for choosing the topic on the global nurse workforce is because many contemporary issues are surrounding it that affect the healthcare sector. For instance, the supply of skilled nurses is volatile as many nurses shift in and out of the workforce when the economy fluctuates. The current surge in newly registered nurses does not seem to solve the potential future shortage of nurses. These predictions are based on the analysis that when the rate of unemployment in the U.S, for instance, drops to 6.5%, many nurses would retire or work part time which will lead to a regional shortage of nurses (Lee et al., 2014). The citizens thus have a collective obligation to advocate for several issues affecting healthcare such as the expansion of healthcare insurance coverage under the Affordable Healthcare program. Such an initiative will increase the demand for nurses to counter for the decline in their supply. The shift of the nurse workforce has affected many countries including the U.S, Philippines, and India.

Another issue affecting the global nurse workforce is immigration. The international demand for nurses affects healthcare in a particular country by affecting the nurse-to-patient ratio. In the source country, the ratio increases while in the destination it decreases. Research shows that low nurse-to-patient ratio results in better healthcare. However, the source country is left with the deficiency of nurses which affects the quality of healthcare thus creating a crisis in the sector. Before the workforce immigration, the major constraint that barred international recruitment in the US was the visa cap. Nevertheless, the U.S removed these caps during the immigration reforms. This allowed many foreign-educated nurses (FENs) to migrate to the US. The impact of FENs and the international recruitment patterns on the quality of healthcare has raised concerns creating a necessity for people to lobby the government for funds to improve the healthcare system in a particular country including good pay for nurses to mitigate the effects of workforce immigration. Research indicates that hospitals with high reliance on FENs, inadequate nurses usually experience high mortality rates and rescue failures. For such issues to be solved, there is a need for the government to give financial support to the management of healthcare system through the enactment of legislation to increase the healthcare kitty or by direct government funding.


Lobbying legislators or Local Government for Funds to Support the Global Nurse Workforce

The process of lobbying for funds from local government or legislators includes face-to-face meeting, e-mails, or telephone calls. To reach legislators, citizens can approach a congress to persuade the government to fund and support the global nurse workshop since members of Congress have more influence with legislators compared to a private citizen. There are circumstances; however, whereby individual citizens lobby legislators directly as well as the local government.

Before meeting the legislators or a congress or going to a local government, citizens, as well as healthcare workers, select a committee of representatives to carry out the lobbying process. This select committee prepares a list of agenda preferably in a form letter to be presented to a legislator or local government. The agenda should be limited to at most three separate topics in a printed sheet per issue. They should make a few of copies so that one will be given to the legislator who will take such matters to the assembly and some copies may be given to the legislative assistants as well as other members of staff who usually attend such meetings. It is more productive to talk to the legislator’s staff members than the legislators themselves. The purpose for writing which is to lobby for funds and support through policies is specified in the first paragraph, and it identifies the specific bill that concerns better healthcare. It should also contain how such a fund will help the healthcare sector.

The letter contains the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of the representatives selected to carry out the lobbying process. The contents of the letter cover a number of issues concerning the global nurse workforce such as effects of nurses’ immigration to the ratio of nurse-to-patient and its impact on the quality of healthcare provision. It articulates the possible causes of nurses migration which includes better salaries, allowances and working conditions. The proposal of education and further training for nursing is also outlined. Nurses that are trained to give specialized treatment should be given further training so that they will be capable of providing specialized and highly sensitive treatment instead of a country relying on foreign-educated nurses (Lee et al., 2014). Another reason for lobbying for funds is to expand healthcare insurance cover so that many people can be covered, and general healthcare services are made affordable.

Current Relevance of the Global Nurse Workforce in Today’s Healthcare

The issues surrounding the global nurse workforce have a considerable influence in the healthcare sector in today’s world. The issue of immigration, inadequate training for nursing experts, reliance on the foreign-educated nurses, the inappropriate working conditions for most nurses, insufficient pay for professional nurses, and deficiency of nurse workforce in some countries affect the delivery of healthcare in the current health sector. The topic of global nurse workforce is relevant in the current healthcare sector since the issues involved in it are contemporary issues affecting the global workforce presently. The issue of increasing medical roles for nurses to readjust the global health workforce which meets the needs of a growing population is also a contemporary issue in healthcare (Maier & Aiken, 2016).

How The Global Nurse Workforce is integrated into Clinical Practice

Since the global nurse workforce directly affects the clinical practices, its effectiveness can be incorporated into the current clinical practice for the adequate provision of healthcare. Some of the issues that can be addressed and integrated into the clinical practices involve the concerns about the shortage of nurses, the issue of aging nurses in the workforce as well as in the teaching faculties.  The concerns about failure in achieving the full potential in the demographic diversity of the nurse workforce, continuing conflicts between nurses and physicians, and the concerns about the inability to harness the collective power of the workforce. The funds from the government can also be used to purchase modern machines to be used in healthcare centers to improve the delivery of healthcare services.

How the Information on Global Nurse Workforce is used in the Clinical Setting

             The topic of the global nurse workforce is useful in clinical settings. The issues that are to be addressed have the aim of bettering the healthcare services as well as creating optimum working conditions for nurses. An example is the issue of shortage of nurses. The World Health Organization’s report of 2013 indicated that the would be a shortage of 12.9 million healthcare workers by 2035. This shortage is increasing gradually, and it’s a concern to be addressed before it reaches a critical level. The shortage of healthcare workers is associated with misdistribution of healthcare workforce which affect nurse-to-patient ratio. Healthcare workforce is currently concentrated in the United States, Canada and some parts of India making 37% of the global nurse workforce. The population of those regions makes 14% of the world population with the global disease burden of 10% and spends approximately 50% of the world funds on health. Contrary, the regions within Sub-Saharan Africa with 11% of the world population and 24% world disease burden have only 3% of the world health workforce and spends approximately 1% of world fund on health (Lee et al., 2014). This disparity in fund allocation and the distribution of the healthcare workforce affects the demand and supply of healthcare workers which consequently affect the quality of healthcare provided. There is; therefore, an urgent need to close the financial and the workforce distribution gap to improve healthcare globally.




Jones, C. B., & Sherwood, G. (2014). The globalization of the nursing workforce: Pulling the pieces together. Nursing Outlook62(1), 59-63.

Lee, T., Kang, K. H., Ko, Y. K., Cho, S. H., & Kim, E. Y. (2014). Issues and challenges of nurse workforce policy: a critical review and implication. Journal of Korean Academy of Nursing Administration20(1), 106-116.

Buchan, J., Twigg, D., Dussault, G., Duffield, C., & Stone, P. W. (2015). Policies to sustain the nursing workforce: an international perspective. International nursing review62(2), 162-170.

Maier, C. B., & Aiken, L. H. (2016). Expanding clinical roles for nurses to realign the global health workforce with population needs: a commentary. Israel journal of health policy research5(1), 21.