Georgia one of the worst states for nurses

National Nurses Week is May 6.

In Georgia, that may not be a cause for celebration. The state recently ranked as one of the worst states for nurses.

"For Diane Giles, nursing is more than a job, it's her calling," said co-worker and nominator Jennifer Nack of WellStar Kennestone Hospital.

“For Diane Giles, nursing is more than a job, it’s her calling,” said co-worker Jennifer Nack of WellStar Kennestone Hospital. Lou Zaffos/AJC

Nursing, like many other careers is in a state of transition. The U.S. population is changing, the healthcare industry has changed and nursing has long been a demanding career that requires overtime and can come with certain systemic concerns.

Careers in nursing can be very lucrative and despite the increasing number of individuals choosing nursing as a career, there is still as shortage since qualified nurses are almost always in demand. The job is expected to grow at twice the rate of the average occupation over the next 10 years.

Still, the outlook is a bit different in Georgia, which ranked 44 out of the 50 states (and the District of Columbia) in a WalletHub comparison of 14 metrics that speak to nursing opportunities in each state.

While there is ample opportunity in the state for nurses, Georgia falls way short on the metric of work environment, ranking lower than every state except Louisiana. Work environment issues may include things such as workplace violence, long hours and lack of resources.

It doesn’t help that by 2030 Georgia will be one of the 5 states with the lowest percentage of residents age 65 and over — a demographic that often requires the services of a nurse.

Nurses are the largest group of clinical healthcare professions in our healthcare system in the U.S. and educators and institutions are continuing to search for better ways to educate, prepare and retain them in an increasingly challenging healthcare environment.

Show how much you appreciate nurses by honoring a nurse through the American Nurses Foundation.

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