Kentucky hospitals see dip in nurse vacancy rate

Kentucky hospitals reported a slight drop in nurse vacancy rates this year, though nurse staffing still remains a core challenge, according to the Kentucky Hospital Association's 2023 Workforce Survey Report.  

Among the 89 hospitals that responded to the association's survey, the nurse vacancy rate was 19.7%. This figure is down from 21.9% last year, according to KHA's 2022 workforce report

The total estimated nurse vacancy rate for 2023 — which includes workforce estimates for eight acute hospitals that did not complete KHA's survey this year — suggests this rate may sit even lower at 19.1%. 

Despite the incremental progress, the nursing shortage continues to pose challenges for all hospitals in the state, KHA said.

In particular, hospitals are seeing high vacancy rates for medical-surgical, critical care, operating room/pediatric intensive care unit and emergency department nurses. In five districts across Kentucky, hospitals reported vacancy rates above 40% for medical-surgical nurses. 

View the full report here.

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