The Health Professions and Workforce Planning – Care Example

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"The Health Professions and Workforce Planning" is a perfect example of a paper on care.   There are different changes that are affecting the pediatric nursing profession. For example, there are unmet health targets and chronic underinvestment in terms of training as well as financial sponsoring that has resulted in fewer numbers of pediatric nurses in both developed and developing nations. There are also the changing demographics in many developed nations that are causing changes in the nursing workforce. According to Kane, Shamliyan, Mueller, Duval, & Wilt (2007), most healthcare systems in developed nations are leaning more towards caring for the elderly population because of the rate at which it is increasing.

In addition, a large percentage of pediatric nurses in developing nations is aging rapidly; meaning that in the near future, retirement will remove an additional percentage of pediatric nurses from the workforce. The History of this Profession and how it contributes to these Challenges According to Simoens, Villeneuve & Hurst (2005), the reason why pediatric nursing is facing workforce planning challenges at present has to do with improper planning strategies more than anything else.

The healthcare system is structured in such a way that most pediatric nurses are left with no inpatient roles, and operate mainly in primary care. There are very few independent pediatric nurse practices, and so the public has to rely on hospital facilities when they want to book appointments with pediatric nurses. There would have to be a significant change in healthcare policy to avail incentives that would drive more healthcare workers to choose this specialty. The healthcare sector also neglected to plan for ways of ensuring that the pediatric nurse workforce was supplemented regularly even with an elderly population putting additional stress on the healthcare system.

According to Simoens, Villeneuve, & Hurst (2005), healthcare planners have erred in making presumptions about a pediatric nursing labor force that may not exist to the extent of their expectations. Similarities and Differences on Local, National, and International Settings                       There are different challenges to workforce planning in regards to pediatric nursing. Developing nations have different challenges from developed nations. In developing nations, there are educational challenges that setback workforce planning. The educational systems in most developing nations have not been revised since the 1970s and 80s (Anand & Barnighausen, 2004).

This means that their healthcare professionals such as employers, regulators, educators, and policy-shapers do not go through professional programs that prepare them to deal with present-day challenges. Developing nations also do not have the information systems that are necessary to conduct surveys in order to determine where problems are and how they can be changed. Developing nations also have to contend with the flight of their most qualified nursing professionals to developed nations due to low wages and better working conditions.

Developed nations, on the other hand, have to contend with aging nurse populations that decimate the ranks even while there are few viable programs to train enough new nurses to replace the retiring percentage (Anand & Barnighausen, 2004). From previous information on economics and policy, it can be surmised that when there is demand for specialty medical practitioners, it is merely an indication that there are shortages throughout the healthcare sector. It is important for healthcare managers to be aware of these shortages because they are the ones that will be responsible for creating a framework that includes good governance mechanisms which will prompt human resource proposals that will deliver the skilled professionals to the places that most require them. Recommendations To increase the number of pediatric nurses and have them posted to the places that need them most, health managers first have to work together to collect data to understand the true depth of the lack of pediatric nurses in healthcare facilities.

Policymakers also have to support actions that will contribute towards the alleviation of the current deficit by pushing for programs that encourage more students to specialize in pediatric nursing.

They could also champion the establishment of more nursing education programs that specialize in pediatric nursing.  


Anand, S., & Barnighausen, T. (2004). Human resources and health outcomes: cross country econometric study. Lancet, 364, 1603–1609.

Kane, R. L., Shamliyan, T. A., Mueller, C., Duval, S., & Wilt, T. J. (2007). The association of registered nurse staffing levels and patient outcomes: systematic review and meta analysis. Medical Care, 45, 1195–1204.

Simoens, S., Villeneuve, M., & Hurst, J. (2005). Tackling nurse shortages in OECD countries. Paris: OECD.

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