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The Demand for Nurse Practitioners in Today’s Job Market

Posted on February 1, 2021   |   by   |   Advanced Practice Structure, Employers, Professional Development, Work Environment

We explain why NPs are in demand and how this puts you in a position to negotiate for the job you want.

In today’s rapidly changing healthcare field, the demand for Nurse Practitioners is high. Understanding the changing dynamics of the industry can give you an advantage when it comes to landing a job that is professionally, and financially, rewarding.

Why the U.S. Needs More NPs

The demand for Nurse Practitioners is high because despite recent turmoil in the economy, the field of healthcare will continue to grow into the foreseeable future. There are many reasons for this growth, but chief among them are three things: a growing shortage of physicians, more previously uninsured Americans seeking access to health care, and an aging population that is living longer than in generations past. As the healthcare industry faces these challenges, opportunities will grow for professionals like you.

An article by the National Institute for Health Care Management highlights just how concerning the coming shortage of physicians may be. It points out that the Association of American Medical Colleges estimates there will be a shortage of 130,000 doctors by 2025.1 Combine this shortage with ever expanding insurance coverage available due to the Affordable Care Act and a growing population of baby boomers, and it becomes clear the healthcare industry must find a solution.

You’re In a Great Position as an NP

As an NP with an extensive scope of practice, an advanced degree, and clinical experience in the field, you are in an excellent position for career growth. Jill Gilliland, President of Melnic Consulting Group, says Nurse Practitioners can be an effective staffing alternative to physicians as independent practitioners. Your high competency level allows you to be collaborative team members and play a key role in providing a solution to busy practice environments.

According to The Center for Workforce Studies, a nonprofit organization focused on research regarding the health workforce, registered nurses are one of the health care professions projected to have the largest job growth through 2020.2 Jobs within the health care sector are currently projected to grow at a rate of 30%, or more, through this same time period, which is a rate considered much higher than the growth rate for all other occupations.3 According to an article by the US News and World Report, healthcare officials predict severe shortages of healthcare professionals in the next decade. The article goes on to say that the Bureau of Labor and Statistics estimates 44,700 new positions will be open in the field by 2024.4

The Job Market Is In Your Favor

What does this mean to you? As an NP, your vast skills and abilities will be increasingly sought after and positions available to you will increase, which will afford you job security in the coming decades. This puts you in an advantageous position to negotiate for the benefits that are most important to you, such as salary, vacation time, retirement contributions, and flexible scheduling. In other words, don’t settle.

You can negotiate for what you’re worth. As positions and opportunities for NPs continue to open up, you will have increased prospects for skill building through on-the-job training and orientation programs. Look for these opportunities and use them to help you chart your course to a bright future.

For more information on the demand for Nurse Practitioners and negotiations, see our article: “Know Your Worth: Contract Negotiation for NPs.

At Melnic Consulting Group, we focus exclusively on helping nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, and physician assistants find rewarding jobs in their areas of specialty. If you’d like help finding the right position, please contact us.

  1. National Institute for Health Care Management. Meeting the Demand for Primary Care: Nurse Practitioners Answer the Call. http://www.aacn.nche.edu/downloads/aacn-future-task-force/Inglehart-PC-Article.pdf. Published October 2014. Accessed July 15, 2016.
  2. The Center for Health Workforce Studies. Health Care Employment Projections: An Analysis of Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Projections 2010-2020. https://www.healthit.gov/sites/default/files/chws_bls_report_2012.pdf. Published March 2012. Accessed July 15, 2016.
  3. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Occupational Outlook Handbook: Nurse Anesthetists, Nurse Midwives, and Nurse Practitioners. http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/nurse-anesthetists-nurse-midwives-and-nurse-practitioners.htm. Published December 17, 2015. Accessed July 15, 2016.
  4. US News and World Report Careers. Nurse Practitioner Overview. http://money.usnews.com/careers/best-jobs/nurse-practitioner. Accessed July 15, 2016.

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