Shortageof health care workers
Shortageof health care workers is one of the most important global healthconcerns today. The increased demand for health care services hasoverwhelmed the available number of health care workers. According tothe World Health Organization, the shortage of doctors and nurses inthe global health care systems is estimated to be about 7.2 million.Since the factors that have resulted in the situation have not beendealt with effectively, the situation is likely to get worse in thefuture (WHO, 2012). Some of the most important causes of thisshortage include rapid population growth, increased demand formedical services, higher life expectancy, increased prevalence ofchronic diseases and relatively low number of young people joiningthe profession. The shortage has a direct impact on cost,accessibility and quality of medical services (Rosen, 2012).
Theeffects of medical workers shortage have resulted in several ethicalissues. Some of these ethical issues involve human resourcesrelations and staffing issues such as overworking of the availablemedical workers resulting into burnout. This makes the situationworse as it encourages medical workers to leave the profession anddiscourages the youths from joining medical school due to lack of jobsatisfaction (Rosen, 2012). The tendency to provide health careservices disproportionally to the poor and the rich is also likely toemerge. Poor patient care due to unrealistic workloads and goals oruse of unqualified medical staff is also evident. Nurses should beguided by professional code of conduct and ethical principles, underall circumstances. Thus, nurses have the responsibility of ensuringthat they offer the most appropriate nursing services despite theshortage of medical workers (Rosen, 2012).
Theshortage of medical workers will have huge impacts on the healthcaresystems and communities. It will reduce the availability of medicalcare services, and thus the ability of the health care system to dealwith emerging health care challenges. It will also increase jobdiscontent among health care workers. To deal with this challenge, itis important for governments and the international community toinvest in training of medical workers (Rosen, 2012).
Rosen,B. (2012). Accountabilityand Responsibility in Health Care: Issues in Addressing an EmergingGlobal Challenge.World Scientific, ISBN 9814452130.
WHO.(2016). Globalhealth workforce shortage to reach 12.9 million in coming decades.http://www.who.int/mediacentre/news/releases/2013/health-workforce-shortage/en/