Background: Nurse shortage is an international issue with adverse effects on health and quality care of populations. Aims: To explore attrition experienced by Return to Practice students from Higher Education Institutions in England. Methods: Mixed methods questionnaire-based (n=114) and in-depth interviews (n=20) design. Findings: 52% of respondents left nursing after ≥10 years. 84% stayed in alternative employment during their break from nursing. Two distinct reasons for leaving nursing emerged from the integrated qualitative and quantitative analysis: inability to maintain a positive work/life balance; and lack of opportunity for career advancement whilst retaining nursing registration. Respondents reflected positively on their nursing experience yet frequently reported significant personal or professional incidents prompting their decision to leave. Conclusions: The reasons nurses leave are complex, requiring further research. Professional bodies and managers need to work together to address concerns that many nurses face during their careers that lead to decisions to leave the profession.
|Journal||British Journal of Nursing|
|Publication status||Accepted/In press - 19 Oct 2020|