The Washington Post

Nurses leaving over coronaviru­s stress


A survey of 2,500 nurses released Wednesday found that 64 percent are looking to leave the health-care profession, a nearly 40 percent increase from a similar survey a year ago. Three-quarters of those surveyed said they have experience­d burnout since the coronaviru­s pandemic began, and half said they had suffered feelings of trauma, extreme stress or post-traumatic stress disorder.

“Our nurses are the backbone of our health system,” said Dani Bowie, vice president of clinical strategy and transforma­tion at Trusted Health, a health-care advocacy group that released the survey. “So, if they’re not operating out of their best state, it’s very detrimenta­l to the wellbeing of our community and our patients.”

The pandemic has worsened the U.S. nursing shortage as overworked and ill-treated health-care workers have quit en masse. Half the nurses surveyed said they had been verbally attacked by patients or their family members; almost a quarter said they’d been physically assaulted.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics forecasts an annual average of 194,500 openings for registered nurses through 2030.

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