Strategies to Reduce Nurse Attrition and Labor Cost

Healthcare organizations are facing serious challenges, not least of which is nurse retention. Record levels of burnout are causing nurses to retire early, search for better jobs, or leave the profession altogether.


Instability in the nursing workforce has been on the rise over the past decade. Turnover spiked during the COVID-19 pandemic and is expected to accelerate in the coming years unless steps are taken to address engagement and structural issues in the work environment. As a result, hospitals and health systems are spending more and more money to achieve the coverage required to ensure quality care, patient safety, and regulatory compliance. In fact, agency costs for premium nurse labor increased 75% between 2022 and 2023 as healthcare organizations struggled to fill shifts.


Given these challenges, maintaining the status quo is no longer an option. Traditional approaches to addressing the nurse shortage are driving labor expenses up and operating margins down — a troubling trend that demands immediate action to ensure financial stability moving forward.

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