A coalition of 11 healthcare organizations asked the House and Senate appropriations committees to increase funding for nursing workforce development by $63 million over fiscal 2004 funding, bringing fiscal 2005 funding for such programs to $205 million. In a letter to committee members, the coalition cited a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report that registered nursing will record the greatest job growth of all U.S. professions from 2002 to 2012 and healthcare facilities will have more than 1.1 million RN positions to fill during the 10-year period. According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, nursing schools turned away about 16,000 qualified applicants in 2003 because of insufficient capacity. The AACN and the American Hospital Association are members of the coalition. -- by Tony Fong
Groups seek more funds to build RN workforce
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