The findings of the RN Work Project study, published in the November/December issue of the Journal of Professional Nursing, will help chief nursing officers do just that. According to the study, nurses said that the two most prevalent barriers to continuing their education were "cost" and "family/children." A "lack of time" came in third.
Many nurses said they have trouble fitting school around their work schedules and that their hospitals are inflexible when it comes to allowing them to change their work hours in order to accommodate classes.
When barriers are identified, solutions aren't far behind, and the solution here is obvious: Hospitals should do what they can to help nurses fit education into their lives.
"That seems to me that's something fairly easy for hospitals to do," Kovner says. "I do see it with some of my own students, that there's no flexibility on the part of the hospital…to help them in terms of going back to school."