Study: 23% of nurse leaders consider leaving in next 6 months

The American Organization of Nursing Leadership has completed a five-part longitudinal study on the challenges facing nurse leaders, and the results have revealed a significant portion of them might already have one foot out the door.

The health care industry is facing a nursing shortage the International Council of Nurses named a “global health emergency” back in March 2023. The global shortage hit 30.6 million in 2019, and an additional 13 million nurses will be needed in the coming years because of the industry-crippling effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Now, the AONL’s latest study, a November 2023 survey of 2,476 nurse leaders, has revealed 23% of those surveyed said they are considering leaving theirpositions within the next six months.

Twelve percent of those asked said they definitely intend to leave their leadership positions within that timeframe. Nearly a quarter of those said they plan on leaving the nursing profession all together. Roughly 44% of those leaving said they are doing so because work is negatively affecting their well-being, but nearly just as many said they are leaving in pursuit of promotions or other work opportunities.

“The latest Longitudinal Nursing Leadership Insight Study examines changes in health care from the perspective of nurse leaders,” the organization reported.

“While still a primary challenge, the state of staff emotional health and well-being is at its best since July 2020,” it continued. “The challenge of travelers and the contingent workforce has also improved substantially since summer 2022. The mounting challenges today are staff recruitment and retention, financial resource availability and workplace violence.”

At least 20% of those surveyed said they are leaving their nursing positions because of challenges with other colleagues, staffing or other work-resource issues, or a need for a higher income.

About the Author