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Nursing Shortage in Schools and Hospitals in Massachusetts

Posted by David P. McCormack

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34 school districts in Massachusetts do not meet the state guidelines of having at least 1 nurse for every 500 students. Why is this concerning? In some communities, students’ only access to healthcare is through their school nurse. What people may not realize is that school nurses play an important role in student lives and health. Not only do they take care of injuries at school, but nurses also manage students’ medications. It may surprise people to learns that school nurses dispense more than one million doses of medication each year.  

The shortage of school nurses is often due to budget, but also reflects the larger nursing shortage throughout the state. Schools are at an even bigger disadvantage when it comes to hiring from the reduced pool of nurses. School nurses in Massachusetts make about 20% less than they would in other settings (per data from Glassdoor.com and Salary.com).  Schools can find it hard to compete for nurses with hospitals and doctors’ offices.  

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently analyzed the nursing workforce. They found that the nursing shortage will continue in Massachusetts through 2030. This shortage of nurses means patients will not receive the care they need, which can lead to further injury or worsening of illness. This seems to be a problem that will only get worse in school districts around Massachusetts in the years to come.  

SUGARMAN attorneys have extensive experience handling medical malpractice claims. If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of medical negligence, you may be entitled to compensation. To learn more, speak to SUGARMAN today by calling 617-542-1000, or emailing info@sugarman.com.