How Florida Can Fill Up Majority of a 13-Million Nursing Shortage by 2030

by Bobby Reyes

A registered nurse with the Florida Department of Health explains the process of the specimen collection to a nursing home resident in Northeast Florida | Photo by Sgt. Michael Baltz via Wikimedia Commons

Part XLVII of the “EDEN America” Series

This column has been written for nearly two years about the warning made by the World Health Organization (WHO.) in 2019 (pre-pandemic) that there is a coming shortage of six million trained and Board-certified nurses by 2030. It is very feasible for Philippine nursing schools to fill up half of the needed nurses — as RNs. And let them finish the junior and senior years of a bachelor’s degree in nursing in the United States. If every Filipino or Third-World indigent family can turn out a qualified nurse — to be deployed abroad — that medical worker will elevate his (or her family) to the Middle Class in 10 years. Imagine millions of families becoming financially independent and empowered in less than six years because many nurses working in North America and Europe earn each from $75,000 to $120,000 per year.

But apparently, due to the COVID-19 disease that caused almost 15-million fatalities (and counting), the “World could be short 13 million nurses by 2030,” as reported by the Beckers Hospital Review datelined Jan. 25, 2022.

As forecast by the WHO, the nursing shortage is now up by 7-million.

Ty Javellana is my friend and fellow member of the Philippine-American Chamber of Commerce of Central Florida (PACC-CF). And he wants to be the Democratic Party nominee for the position of Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of Florida.

A few months ago, Mr. Javellana wholeheartedly accepted this column’s suggestion that he should place the idea of fielding half of the world’s expected nursing shortage — as reported by the WHO — as a number one priority of the economic platform of his candidacy. The entire Democratic Party slates may also adopt it in Florida for his year’s and subsequent elections. But now, given the Beckers Hospital Review’s new estimate of the 2030 nursing shortage, Mr. Javellana and this columnist will have to go back to the drawing board. It will not be easy to field 3-million more additional nursing graduates in Florida’s nursing colleges. The original target of 3-million would meet logistical difficulties. How much harder would it be if the number is now 6.5-million nurses?

Florida’s population will be approximately 22-million by the end of this year. Some 6.5-million new residents — composed of working Board-certified nurses and other medical professionals — is quite a (happy) problem to solve.

But Mr. Javellana is apparently the only aspirant (in both major parties) for Florida’s CFO with extensive experience in accounting, auditing, finance, taxation, and related fields. He told this columnist that, like so many Floridians, he is so disappointed by Florida’s ranking in Healthcare (#25), Healthcare Access (#41), Healthcare Quality (#18), and Public Health (#13).

CFO-aspirant Javellana is in the process of organizing a multiethnic study group (MSG) to finalize a blueprint that will not only elevate Florida to be in the Top Five of the above four health-related rankings of the 50 states in the country. This columnist has accepted his offer to join the MSG, possibly as its co-chair.

“But Mr. Javellana is apparently the only aspirant (in both major parties) for Florida’s CFO with extensive experience in accounting, auditing, finance, taxation, and related fields. He told this columnist that, like so many Floridians, he is so disappointed by Florida’s ranking in Healthcare (#25), Healthcare Access (#41), Healthcare Quality (#18), and Public Health (#13).”

If the Great State of Florida will help form Public and Private Partnerships (PPP) in all its counties and big cities, it can generate sufficient funding without raising taxes or the state borrowing funds. The PPPs can easily add millions of Board-certified nurses and other medical professionals from Floridians, Americans, and foreign medical students. Non-Floridians will become residents of the state, and no matter where they will be assigned, they will be legal residents and taxpayers of Florida. With billions in new taxes, Florida can expand its healthcare facilities and even operate medical centers in North America and other countries lacking healthcare infrastructures like medical centers. Or even viably run distressed rural hospitals in the United States and worldwide.

This columnist is preparing a draft of the short-, medium, and long-term projects in healthcare and downstream projects for Florida. A medical center comes with a general hospital, medical schools, and a research and development (R&D) center. Yes, pragmatic plans, programs, and projects to elevate Florida to become the best and biggest American healthcare provider in due time. And also lead in many industries that will boost the quality of life of Floridians beyond the wildest dreams of the present leaders of the state.

And 2030 is just eight years away. Suppose Floridians, especially the voters, will work on a bipartisan basis. In that case, the sky is limit — to use an oft-quoted adage — for advances in medicine and healthcare in their state. And by the time the Olympic Games in Los Angeles, CA, are held in 2028, several hospital ships — as may be owned by Florida’s PPPs — may be anchored in ports in Southern California. The vessels may be needed to back up the land-based hospitals in Los Angeles County for any medical crisis before, during, and after the Olympic Games. How’s that for foresight in finalizing feasibility studies for the proposed healthcare projects in Florida?

More details by next Wednesday.

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