KENTUCKY — Earlier this fall, the Kentucky Hospital Association unveiled a new report, showing hospitals in our state face a shortage of nurses that is already affecting patient care and could lead to hospital closures.

During this In Focus Kentucky segment, Kentucky Hospital Association President, Nancy Galvagni, joins this program to share details about the 2022 Workforce Survey report, which is a 60-page study that looks at the status of Kentucky’s hospital workforce and the data is compiled based on feedback from 110 rural and urban hospitals across Kentucky.

“You know, nurses are highly trained professionals. To be a nurse you know, you’re gonna go through a two-year or four-year program, take licensure exams, so we can’t produce the nurses that are needed tomorrow. That’s going to be a long-term prospect for us. We’ve never seen a shortage of this magnitude. And of course, there’s a lot of things affecting that. And you really hit on one of them and that is the baby boomer population, but just in nursing that in every profession is you know, retiring, and there’s just not enough young people going into the profession to replace those that are retiring. So that’s a concern. And, you know, I think the other issue is COVID had a very, you know, big toll on the mental health of our nurses. And so we probably lost people from the nursing profession as a result of COVID as well. So it’s sort of a double whammy on why we are facing this critical shortage right now. And it’s not just in Kentucky, it’s a national issue,” explains Galvagni

You can watch the full In Focus Kentucky segment in the player above.