The Nursing Workforce in an Era of Health Care Reform


David I. Auerbach, Douglas O. Staiger, Ulrike Muench, Peter I. Buerhaus

April 18, 2013

The foundation of the health care delivery system is its workforce, including the 2.8 million registered nurses (RNs) who provide health care services in countless settings. The importance of RNs is expected to increase in the coming decades, as new models of care delivery, global payment, and a greater emphasis on prevention are embraced. These and other changes associated with health care reform will require the provision of holistic care, greater care coordination, greater adherence to protocols, and improved management of chronic disease — roles that are inherently aligned with the nursing model of care.

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