Viewpoints: Nursing Shortage Has Easy Solution; Ways Employers Can Help With Mental Health
Editorial writers delve into nursing shortages, mental health and Alzheimer's.
The Baltimore Sun:
Is Immigration The Answer To America’s Nursing Shortage?
Maryland, like much of the United States, has wrestled with a nursing shortage for decades — a seemingly incurable affliction — but a historic rate of burnout after treating patients through a grueling pandemic is about to make our nursing crisis much, much worse. Even before the first coronavirus wave hit, health systems in Baltimore and virtually every corner of the state were already approaching collapse under the weight of too many patients and too few nurses. One pre-pandemic forecast estimated a local shortfall of 10,000 nurses and as many as 200,000 nationally. Now, worrying new data from a nationwide nurse survey shows that 36% of nurses are considering quitting. (Shari Constantini, 5/24)
Companies Can Do More To Support Employee Mental Health
Economic and food insecurity, family obligations, home schooling and the ongoing pandemic sent stress, anxiety and depression to all-time highs. Calls to help centers and suicide assistance lines are up. So are alcohol and cannabis sales, and opioid deaths are accelerating. More than 40 states have reported increased deaths from opioids since the epidemic began. Then there are residual symptoms from COVID-19 itself. According to a recent report in Lancet Psychiatry, nearly 1 in 5 with COVID-19 is diagnosed with a psychiatric disorder like anxiety, depression or insomnia within three months. People recovering from COVID-19 were about twice as likely to be diagnosed with a mental health disorder as compared with someone who had the flu. (Terri L. Rhodes, 5/25)
Georgia Health News:
Risking Crisis In Mental Health
“How are you?” is taking on a new meaning in this lingering pandemic state. We know many people aren’t doing well — beyond the physical impact of COVID-19 — because they’ve shared that. A recent Kaiser Family Foundation study showed that during the pandemic, one in four adults reported symptoms of anxiety or depression, up from one in 10 in 2019. That’s not surprising in a year where the pandemic and other stressors, like social injustice, elections and the economy, shared the same stage. (Dr. Timothy Kennedy, 5/24)
Medicare Should Cover Amyloid PET Scans To Diagnose Alzheimer's
One morning in 2012, my wife Geri looked in the mirror and failed to recognize her own face. Our neurologist diagnosed Geri, a former health care executive and nurse, with early dementia (also known as mild cognitive impairment) but could not confirm if she had Alzheimer’s disease or give us a clearer diagnosis. (Jim Taylor, 5/25)