Growth in BSN Programs Impacts Oregon’s Workforce

The Oregon Center for Nursing’s (OCN) recently released a new report, “Trends in Oregon Nursing Education, 2012-2018,” which examines long-term trends in the state’s nursing education pipeline.

“It all starts with education,” said Jana R. Bitton, OCN’s Executive Director. “Understanding Oregon’s capacity to educate future nurses is a vital component to ensuring our state has the nursing workforce it needs.”

The report used data collected from nursing education programs across the state of Oregon by the Oregon State Board of Nursing. The data reveals two-year associate degree nursing programs are showing signs of shrinking, while four-year bachelor’s degree programs have demonstrated consistent growth.

“As we continue looking at community or regional maldistribution of Oregon’s nursing workforce, the growth, or lack thereof, of education programs will have a downstream impact,” Bitton said. “Associate degree nursing programs are a key source of nurses in Oregon’s rural communities. Further, Oregon is not currently educating enough nurses to meet employer demand, and employers rely on recruiting nurses from out-of-state to meet their needs.”

OCN is a nonprofit organization created by nursing leaders in 2002. OCN facilitates research and collaboration for Oregon’s nursing workforce to support informed, well-prepared, diverse and exceptional nursing professionals. Recognized by the Oregon state legislature as a state advisory for nursing workforce issues, OCN fulfills its mission through nurse workforce research, building partnerships, and promoting nursing and healthcare.

Media Contact:
Jana R. Bitton, MPA
Executive Director