The nursing industry has always been considered a strong career field with the potential for high earnings and personal growth. But will that direction continue for the foreseeable future?

If you’re thinking of becoming a nurse or are an established nurse who is curious about the twists and turns your job may be taking, we’d like to fill you in on what you can expect.

Here are some of the current trends in nursing and how they may affect your job requirements, opportunities, and earning potential.


trends in nursing


Table of Contents




#1: Nursing Shortages Are Here To Stay

Some people think the current nursing shortage came about during the COVID era, but the American healthcare system has needed more nurses since 2012, and the shortage is expected to last until at least 2030. 

Some of the reasons for this shortage are:

  • A large chunk of nurses reaching retirement
  • The rapid aging of our population; and
  • Many nurses leaving the field due to burnout

Some organizations are working tirelessly to mitigate the effects of this shortage and help fill current and future nursing vacancies. 

For instance, The American Association of Colleges of Nursing has asked for more nursing education funding and federal legislation to help with this issue. And the Center for American Progress released a fact sheet about their ideas on how policymakers can relieve the nursing shortage.


#2: Nursing Job Opportunities Will Continue To Increase

Not only will nurses be needed to fill all the slots of retiring nurses, but there will be even more opportunities due to healthcare facilities around the country expanding in an effort to keep up with the growing and aging population.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that registered nurse jobs will grow by 6% from 2021-2031. And nurse practitioner positions are expected to increase by a whopping 40% in that same period.

Whether you’re just getting started in nursing or exploring educational opportunities to help move yourself up the ladder, your job security is strong.


#3: Even More Nursing Candidates Will Utilize Online Education

Online schooling in general has seen great growth in recent decades, and the same is true for nursing education. 

Online courses are popular because they:

  • Provide greater flexibility
  • Can be more affordable than in-person classes
  • Give more opportunities to rural students
  • May offer 24/7 student assistance
  • And more

Now that virtual learning has become more mainstream and nurses are proving they have received an effective educational base from it, an even greater number of students can be expected to go this route.


#4: A Greater Number of Nurses Will Earn BSN Degrees as the Demand for Higher Education Grows

As healthcare gets more and more sophisticated, the need for bachelor’s degrees and more will grow. Reports have recommended that more nurses will need to go beyond an associate’s degree.

Higher degrees will give nurses access to:

  • Added and bigger job opportunities
  • Higher salaries; and
  • Better patient outcomes

Nurses with bachelor’s degrees could qualify for jobs such as nurse educator, clinical research nurse, or nurse manager. To become a nurse practitioner, candidates will need to pursue a master’s degree.


#5: More Nurses Will Choose To Specialize

Nursing career trends show that there are more specialties than ever these days. These may include fields like:

  • Cardiac nursing
  • Pediatric nursing
  • ICU nursing
  • Oncology nursing
  • And many, many more

Nurses with specialties are often more in demand than general nurses. If you’d like the opportunity to try working in many different fields to gain more experience and see which one you like best, you may want to give travel nursing a try.

With Trusted Nurse Staffing’s Pronto job search, you can plug in the specialties and locations you’re interested in and find the best jobs to help you on your journey.


nursing trends 2023


#6: There Will Be Greater Utilization of Telemedicine and Other Technologies

Technology has changed how the world works, and the medical field is no exception. Trends in nursing show that telehealth job opportunities continue to grow.

The widespread use of telemedicine has:

  • Given patients more access to care
  • Helped automate nurse tasks
  • Saved patients and healthcare providers time; and
  • Given nurses more flexibility over their work life

A survey about the future of work in nursing discovered that most nurses are on board with telemedicine and excited to continue to try varying delivery models in their jobs.


#7: More Focus Will Be Put on Self-Care and Mental Health Awareness for Nurses

One of the big reasons for nursing shortages continues to be burnout, so something must be done to help our medical professionals in order to combat this. Long shifts, an often frantic pace, and hours on end without breaks can quickly lead to emotional breakdowns.

Growing awareness of the need for nurses to take control of their mental health and make self-care a priority has led to the creation of many platforms, including:

Nurses can explore these programs to find out which ones have resources that will help them the most.


#8: Nursing Informatics Will Be a Growing Field

Nursing informatics is a field combining medical knowledge with technology, and there will continue to be a greater need for it as telehealth and electronic medical records capabilities rise.

Nurses interested in this field will need to merge medical science with analytical and information sciences as they manage and communicate data.


#9: There Will Be a Greater Need for Bilingual Nurses

The United States is one of the most linguistically diverse countries in the world, with some sources saying that between 350 and 430 languages are spoken here. Instead of employing translators, healthcare facilities love to hire nurses who speak a second language.

The most in-demand second language is Spanish, but millions of Americans also speak these languages, among others:

  • Indian languages 
  • Chinese
  • Tagalog
  • Vietnamese; and
  • Arabic


#10: Virtual Simulation Training Will Become a Reality

Virtual simulation training allows both new and experienced nurses to use technology to truly immerse themselves in possible healthcare scenarios. Instead of just reading about problems and solutions in a textbook or watching a presentation teaching them what to do in the moment, nurses are able to:

  • Be exposed to a variety of situations
  • Use their critical decision-making skills; and
  • Work to solve problems in as close to a real environment as possible

This will allow nurses to be even more prepared for whatever comes their way.


current trends in nursing


#11: Nurses May Start Retiring Later

With the slowing economy and nursing shortage crisis, many older nurses are choosing to keep their jobs well past retirement age. For some, that looks like transitioning from physically demanding positions to areas such as desk work. 

For others, that may mean stepping into the contingent workforce and taking temporary positions like travel nursing jobs. This will allow them to continue to do what they love and help the medical community while having more time for themselves in their older years.


#12: More Nurse Navigators Will Be Needed

Nurse navigators assist with guiding patients through the healthcare system. They use their management and people skills to help people understand what’s happening to them and advocate to get all the care they need.

With our rapidly aging population and increase in chronic health conditions, more of these case manager-type roles will be needed.


#13: More Men Will Be Recruited Into Nursing

In 1970, men represented 2.7% of the nursing population. By 2011, this number had grown to 9.6% and continues to rise steadily. With the nursing shortages in this country and globally, healthcare organizations will make one of their focuses recruiting men to help fill positions.


#14: The Travel Nursing Industry Will Continue To Grow

Travel nursing, already a quite popular industry, grew by leaps and bounds from high demand during the COVID era. But it continues to be a sought-after field by nurses who enjoy:

  • Higher compensation and benefits
  • Opportunities for travel; and
  • The chance to work in different environments and get experience in a variety of specialties

At Trusted Nurse Staffing, we do everything we can to support our nurses and help them thrive. Check out our Pronto job search to start doing what you love with travel nursing.


nursing career trends


#15: Travel Nursing Salaries Will Remain Relatively High

Whether you’re interested in trying out travel nursing or already have experience in the field, you’ll be happy to know that one of the trends in nursing shows travel nurses will continue to receive competitive pay and benefits, usually earning more than their regular nursing counterparts.

Some of the reasons for this include:

  • They help ease shortages and work difficult-to-fill positions
  • They travel to remote areas of need or crisis zones
  • They help reduce turnover costs
  • They earn many stipends and bonuses
  • And more

If you want to work as a travel nurse, the company you contract with is very important. Make sure you partner with a team that looks out for your fiscal and emotional well-being.


Trusted Nurse Staffing is the best choice when you’re looking for a travel nurse agency. 

You can trust us to find you the right position, work to provide you with the best benefits package, and be there for you every step of the way. We keep abreast of trends in nursing and try to use those to your advantage whenever possible.

And with the Pronto job search, it’s easier than ever to find your dream job. Contact us today to get started.


trends in nursing