Men in Nursing: The Past, the Present, and the Future

Source: www.trocaire.edu/trailblazer-blog

tcb1 resized 600

Historically, both men and women have filled the challenging and rewarding role of a nurse. It wasn’t until the Civil War, when nearly 3 million men filled the ranks of two competing American armed forces, that women began to dominate the field.

Today, over 43 million Americans are aged 65 or older – a number that is expected to double over the next 35 years. A larger elderly population means a greater need for long-term health services, and as a result, the healthcare field is one of the fastest-growing industries.

tcb resized 600

Why does this matter?

 1. The U.S. is already on the verge of a nursing shortage. 

The American Association of Colleges of Nursing reports that the U.S. is experiencing a shortage of Registered Nurses (RNs) that is expected to intensify as Baby Boomers age and the need for health care grows.

Did you know only 7 percent of nurses are currently men?   According to the latest National Sample Survey of Registered Nurses conducted by the Health Resources and Services Administration, the percentage of male nurses has more than doubled in the past three decades, but still lingers at 7% today. This number is expected to triple within the next few decades as the need for both male and female healthcare professionals continues to grow.

2. A diverse population needs a diverse nursing staff. 

According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), men are enrolling in nursing programs at a higher rate compared to the past. The IOM report states that there still need to be an emphasis on gender diversification and inclusion in the workforce.

The IOM Report also states that the nursing profession “needs to continue efforts to recruit men; their unique perspectives and skills are important to the profession and will help contribute additional diversity in the workforce.”  The increase in men pursuing a nursing career will help create a more diverse healthcare environment. 

3. Discrimination issues must be overcome.

The idea that men cannot be nurses will never be eradicated until men take to the profession in greater numbers. While nursing is seen as a nontraditional career for men today, the stereotype must change -- nursing is simply too important of a job, and too attractive of a career.

“There are just far too many benefits that come along with nursing, such as a flexible schedule, a secure position, and high pay,” notes the website NursingWithoutBorders.org, “and so it’s therefore difficult for anyone to refuse to pursue a field that only continues to grow.”

Recent Posts

2024 U.S. NP Pay By Cost of Living
Nurse Practitioners play a crucial role in the healthcare system, providing high-quality care to patients across the nation. One key aspect of their profession is their hourly pay, which varies...
Read More
2024 U.S. RN Pay By Cost of Living
Registered Nurses (RNs) play a crucial role in the healthcare system, providing vital care and support to patients across the United States. One key aspect that often piques interest is the hourly...
Read More
Inclusive Care for LGBTQ+ Patients: Nurse Best Practices
In the ever-evolving healthcare landscape, it is crucial to prioritize inclusivity to deliver top-notch care to all patients. This is especially significant when tending to LGBTQ+ individuals, who...
Read More

Subscribe to Email Our Newsletter

Education_Award_Square