WSJ: Nurses Flock Back to Hospitals After Leaving in the Pandemic

May 1, 2023 | Aya Media Buzz , Newsroom Featured

The shift comes as soaring pay from temporary agencies slumps. Aya Healthcare’s temporary-nurse pay is down about 28% from a year ago, said Alan Braynin, chief executive of the agency.

Many nurses who left hospital jobs due to exhaustion or to pursue lucrative temporary work during the pandemic are returning to their previous employers. The return of these nurses, due to falling pay from temp agencies and new hospital perks, is helping to ease the shortages that have crowded emergency rooms and forced hospitals to turn away patients. Hospital systems are reporting an increase in nurse hiring, as nurses who left during the pandemic are among those being rehired.

Efforts to win nurses back by offering better pay, less demanding positions, and flexible schedules, as well as perks such as student debt relief and adoption and infertility benefits, are contributing to their return. These factors, coupled with the decreasing pay from temporary agencies, have led many nurses to conclude that working in the same place every day is preferable to the uncertainty of short-term contracts.

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