We had the opportunity to catch up with Utah Nurses Association Executive Director Liz Close, PhD, at the 2023 Utah State of Reform Health Policy Conference earlier this year.
Saying that Utah loses close to a third of recently graduated nurses within two years of them entering the field, Close spoke about the efforts underway to sustain this critical group of healthcare workers.
“Nursing is seen as a cost in the budget, when actually, nursing is the revenue producer. Because you cannot get admitted to a hospital, for instance, unless you have a nurse to take care of you … and that takes education and experience.”
She says it’s important for Utah’s healthcare sector to focus on ways to prevent the stress and obstacles that these nurses face upon starting their work, rather than repeatedly training and hiring new nurses who will continue to face these challenges.