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First National Recruitment Drive for Nurses

First National Recruitment Drive for Nurses

The first national initiative for the Future of Nursing is launched

A vital new national initiative - The Campaign for the Future of Nursing - is being launched this week, to encourage New Zealanders to consider nursing as a career of choice.

The initiative comes at a critical time for nursing in New Zealand, with an estimated shortage of 2,000 nurses[1]. It aims to drive recruitment into this diverse and dynamic profession to help avoid a national shortage crisis.

The Campaign for the Future of Nursing has been developed in collaboration with key members of the New Zealand nursing community and the New Zealand Ministry of Health, and is the first national initiative which focuses on the rewarding and challenging opportunities provided by this profession in the 21st century.

At the centre of the initiative is a website, which gives information about careers in nursing, links to further information sites around the country and shares the inspirational stories of current nurses. A diverse range of activities, including a school outreach programme and poster advertising will alert people to the campaign and drive them to the website.

"Nursing today offers you the opportunity to be at the cutting-edge of technology and health care whilst making a real difference to people's lives. You can develop your career while travelling the world and engage in ongoing education in the areas of clinical practice that excite and motivate you. With awareness of the many options available to you in your professional life you can make rewarding choices," said Kathy Holloway, NETS (National Association of Nurse Education in the Tertiary Sector).

What is exciting about the campaign is the way that the nursing community and the Ministry of Health have come together to play a part in this vital recruitment drive for nurses.

“Nursing is an essential element of the healthcare system,” said Mark Jones, Chief Advisor Nursing, Ministry of Health. “This initiative aims to demonstrate the versatility and diversity of this highly skilled profession. We want to excite potential recruits about the challenges and rewards this career offers. We also hope that the initiative will ensure current nurses receive the professional recognition they rightly deserve.

“Whether you are in high school, are a former nurse who has left the profession, or are thinking about a second career, there has never been a better time to become a nurse,” he added.

"We would encourage anyone wishing to discover more about nursing to visit the comprehensive website, for more information on this career,” Kathy Holloway concluded.

The Campaign for the Future of Nursing is an initiative of the Johnson & Johnson family of companies.

[1] Health Workforce Advisory Committee, The New Zealand Health Workforce - A Stocktake of Issues and Capacity 2001



Why is a campaign for nursing needed?

Nurses are a vital resource in society. The nursing shortage, both globally and at a local level is reaching a critical point. Despite the recognised importance of the nursing profession, New Zealand faces a nursing shortage. There are an estimated 2,000 nursing vacancies in New Zealand and this number is set to increase over the next couple of years due to the impact of an ageing workforce[1].

The goal of this initiative is to address the ongoing shortage of nurses by changing the current perceptions of the profession and to encourage those who might be interested to consider entering it. At the same time as attracting newcomers, the initiative also seeks to encourage current nurses to take advantage of the diversity of roles and professional development opportunities within nursing, and encourage the return of those who have left the profession.
Who is behind the initiative?

The Campaign for the Future of Nursing is a Johnson & Johnson initiative and is being developed in close consultation with the New Zealand Ministry of Health and key members of the New Zealand nursing community in order to ensure its success.

The Campaign for the Future of Nursing is a tangible demonstration not only of the commitment to the nurses Johnson & Johnson work with, but the entire New Zealand community of which they are a part. Johnson & Johnson has a credo which was created in 1943 and continues to be the lynchpin of their business ethics. For fifty years, the credo has guided Johnson & Johnson’s actions in fulfilling their commitment to healthcare workers, patients, customers, employees, the community and shareholders.

About Nursing
Nurses are highly respected in the community and are recognised for the breadth of knowledge and skills required to care for their patients. They work as part of teams of highly skilled professionals, in positions of authority, supporting one another with their specialty areas of knowledge.

The huge advances in medical technology and therapy has meant that nurses’ skills must reflect the ever-changing and developing world around them; nurses must be ready to adapt those skills to a wide variety of situations. Nurses act as patient advocates as well as anticipating and responding to their care needs on both an acute and ongoing basis. Working closely with the communities, nurses also play a vital role in fulfilling New Zealanders’ primary health care needs, promoting health as well as treating disease.

The Nursing Labour Force in New Zealand
- A total of 38,484 active nurses were registered in New Zealand in 2004 [2]
Of these, 34,660 are registered nurses and 3,824 are enrolled nurses [2]

Geographical Distribution of Nurses in New Zealand
- Auckland has the lowest number of active registered nurses per inhabitants (771 nurses per 100,000 population) [2]
- The West Coast of New Zealand has the highest number of active registered nurses per inhabitant (1,013 per 100,000 population) [2]
- The average for New Zealand is 853 active registered nurses per 100,000 population and 94 active enrolled nurses per 100,000 population [2]

An ageing workforce
- The highest percentage of registered and enrolled nurses in New Zealand are in the 40-50 years age group with 35.4% and 49.6% respectively [2]
- 64% of all registered nurses in New Zealand are over 40 years old with the corresponding figure for enrolled nurses being 89% [2]

Ethnicity of the New Zealand nursing labour force
- There are currently 2,883 Maori nurses in the New Zealand workforce (7.5%) [2]. This means that the number of Maori nurses in New Zealand has more than doubled since 1994 [1]
- The majority of the New Zealand nurse workforce consists of New Zealanders with European background (68.3%), with the second largest group being immigrant nurses of European descent (9.7%) [2]

Men and nursing
- The proportion of male registered nurses in the New Zealand labour force is 6.4%, whereas only 3.1% of the enrolled nurses are male [2]

Nursing roles in New Zealand
- Primary health care nursing and surgical nursing are the two largest areas of employment for registered nurses in New Zealand, with 10.6% and 10.2% respectively [2]
- Nearly one third of enrolled nurses in New Zealand work in continuing care for the elderly, which makes it the largest area of employment [2]


[1] Health Workforce Advisory Committee, The New Zealand Health Workforce - A Stocktake of Issues and Capacity 2001

[2] New Zealand Health Information Service (NZHIS) New Zealand Workforce Statistics 2004 – Nurses and Midwives, 2004

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