Nursing retirement is becoming a problem

On Nurse’s Day, May 12, the achievements of around 15,000 nurses in Lower Austria will be honored. But as the industry is currently facing major challenges, flaws are also being highlighted. By 2030, an additional 9,500 nursing staff will be needed in Lower Austria, according to a joint statement by State Health Councilor Christian Teschl-Hoffmeister and State Councilor Ludwig Schleritzko (both ÖVP).

The ever-improving medical care and consequent aging of the population, the coming wave of retirement from the 1960s generation, and the complex demands of the nursing workforce are driving the great demand for workers. Therefore, new nurses should be recruited.

Warning demands of nursing systems

On the occasion of Nurses Day, nursing organizations and staff representatives, among others, called for the development of nursing staff. There is already a staff shortage, resulting in long wait times for mobile care, closed beds in nursing homes and hospitals, and the exodus of much-needed skilled workers.

What/forringer’s helmet

Everyday life in caregiving can be very difficult and exhausting for carers

Among other things, Caritas called for increased training spaces and more flexible working hours. The Confederation of Austrian Trade Unions (ÖGB) sees a gradual reduction of working hours, a maintenance allowance for all employees in the disability sector and a statutory staff ratio as important solutions.

The Working Group on Religious Hospitals in Austria, which provides a fifth of hospital beds in Austria, and Malteser Care, among others, pointed to bureaucratic barriers to nursing staff from third countries. Lebenshilfe calls for regulations and measures to provide social security that cares for relatives of people with disabilities. There is an emergency, for example, in vacation care for children with disabilities.

Multiple training pathways in nursing

Around 2,000 new apprenticeship positions are created in Lower Austria every year. A so-called nursing training bonus has also been decided in 2022 to make the profession more attractive. Caregivers are paid 600 euros per month during their training.

Vietnam

Phong Truyen Thang / Hanoi University

These 150 students are part of a training program in Vietnam and will come to Lower Austria for the first training in a year.

Anyone wishing to complete their nursing training in Lower Austria can do so in different ways: courses start after the 5th grade and offers to learn the nursing profession in the second or third academic track.

In the future, Lower Austria also wants to rely more on skilled workers from abroad. Next year, 75 students from Vietnam are expected to come to Lower Austria to train as nurses within a year – Nursing from Vietnam against staff shortage (noe.ORF.at; March 18, 2024).

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