By 2012, Florida is expected to have a shortage of over 45,000 nurses statewide. According to the Orlando Business Journal, the Foundation for Florida’s Community Colleges and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida are working together to help reduce the nursing shortage through awareness of nursing and educational opportunities.
In addition, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida has established a scholarship starting at $2.5 million which is matched by the Florida Legislature. This is significant as this will fund 200 students yearly who are pursuing an nursing degree online in Florida.
In dealing with the nursing shortage, establishing a scholarship is a good start. However, an additional 200 students over the next 6 years will increase the nursing staff by only 1200, a far cry from the needed 45,000. The awareness is important and spreading the need for more scholarships will start the cycle of government action and possible private contribution to help deal with the nursing shortage.