Posted May 05, 2019 10:23:13 A new study has found that although there are more nursing jobs in Australia, there are still more people with health care qualifications than there are nurses.
A study by researchers at the Australian National University and the University of Melbourne found that more than 70 per cent of the jobs needed for Australian health care workers are not available to them.
A total of 14 per cent were in low-skill occupations.
The study was published in the American Economic Review.
It found that for nurses and midwives, there were about a third of all health care jobs that were not being filled.
In a similar situation for doctors there were only a quarter of positions.
There are about 70,000 nurses and primary care nurses, and around 100,000 doctors, according to the report.
Dr John O’Connor, from the Australian Centre for Research in Nursing and Midwifery, said the results were surprising.
“It’s quite surprising, because it’s quite typical for a health care industry that has been growing in the past decade,” he said.
“There’s a lot of new nurses coming into the system, and that means that the jobs that are available are quite diverse and can take on different professions.”
Dr O’Neill said the issue of lack of skills in the health care workforce was not just a health service issue, but also a political one.
“The main reason is that the country is in recession, and health care is still the number one industry in Australia,” he told the ABC.
“And we’re talking about health care in a country where the unemployment rate is close to 20 per cent.”
Dr Anthony Williams, the president of the Royal Australasian College of General Practitioners, said there were a lot more nurses and doctors in Australia than there were nurses.
“They’re actually quite good workers, and there’s a large proportion of them in particular skilled jobs, like the primary care and general practitioners,” he explained.
“So you’ve got a very diverse workforce in health care.”
Dr Williams said that in many parts of the country there were no shortages of doctors, nurses or midwives.
But he said there was a problem in the tertiary sector, where many health professionals have been leaving the profession.
“I think it’s going to be very difficult to get more people into tertiary medicine,” he admitted.
“We’ve got some very skilled, very well-trained people coming in, but it’s not going to get as many nurses and other health professionals into the tertial sector as it would be in the public sector.”
He said the situation was different in the private sector, which was more flexible and flexible in its recruitment policies.
“You’ve got to be able to recruit and retain people, and then you’ve gotta be able manage the transition from one industry to another, but in the meantime, you’ve also got to have the skills to manage those transitions,” he added.
The report found that while the Australian Medical Association was supportive of a “strong national role for health professionals”, it had been left with concerns about the quality of the workforce.
It was also concerned that the lack of a national health policy was putting pressures on some health professionals, with more people leaving than entering.
Dr OOConnor said it was not clear that there was much the government could do to change the situation.
“This study does suggest that there are significant barriers to accessing health care services, and therefore there is a need for an Australian-wide policy to address those barriers,” he noted.
“However, it is important to recognise that these barriers exist across all sectors of the Australian economy.”