Nurses top the list for having the most job openings in the country for the next five years.
The nationwide nursing shortage reflects in projections from the U.S. Department of Labor, where it's predicted that more than 500-thousand new nursing jobs will be needed for a growing and aging population.
Jennifer Kleen tells us how a five-year investment is working toward resolving that shortage for North Dakota.
(Jennifer Kleen, KX News) Healthcare is one of the fastest growing industries in the country.
(Karen Zimmerman, Trinity Health Chief Nursing Officer) "This isn't unique to North Dakota"
(Kleen) And a local partnership shows promise of keeping the pace.
(Zimmerman) "What is unique to North Dakota is the way that we're coming together to look at pooling resources and trying to problem solve in a new way."
(Karen Krebsbach, Trinity Board of Directors Treasurer) "The nursing shortage is serious."
(Kleen) That's why Trinity Health has committed $1.75 million dollars to the local education of our nurses over the next five years.
(Krebsbach) "The right way to approach the shortage that we face."
(Kleen) Trinity partnered with Minot State University once before, and this year added support for the nursing programs at the Dakota College at Bottineau.
(Dr. Steven Shirley, Minot State University President) "Thank you to Trinity Health for your trust in our education, for your partnership and for your long-term vision and commitment to growing nursing and nursing education."
(Kleen) Dr. Shirley says local graduates are regularly exceeding state and national averages for pass rates of license exams.
(Shirley) "It's about growing high quality, outstanding nurses to go into the field."
(Zimmerman) "Through a coming together of education and healthcare during a time when we have to do things differently to meet the needs for our community."
(Kleen) Helping to heal the high demand for nurses. In Minot, Jennifer Kleen, KX News.
The nursing shortage has not hit North Dakota as hard as the rest of the nation.
According to data from the Center for Nursing, North Dakota had about 14 nurses for every one-thousand people, that's greater than the national average of about eight.
Counties in southwest North Dakota are experiencing a shortage: the heart of oil country in McKenzie County have five RNs for every thousand people, while places like Cass County have more than double the national ratio average.
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