New Jersey Collaborative Tackles Nursing Shortage

Colleagues in Caring: Regional Collaboratives for Nursing Work Force Development

From 1996 to 2002, Rutgers University College of Nursing, Piscataway, N.J., led a collaborative group of New Jersey nurses, nursing educators, nurse employers and health care policymakers that developed a nursing workforce data collection and supply-and-demand forecasting system that helped identify the state's growing nursing shortage and lead to establishment of a permanent state nursing workforce center.

This project was part of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's (RWJF) national program Colleagues in Caring: Regional Collaboratives for Nursing Work Force Development—a national program RWJF initiated in 1994 to address nursing education and workforce issues at the regional level.

The New Jersey project was one of 23 Colleagues in Caring sites across the country.

Key Results

  • The collaborative developed the New Jersey Nursing Demand Forecasting Model that is able to produce county-by-county forecasts of demand for registered nurses (RNs) and licensed practical nurses (LPNs).

  • The collaborative and its work led to passage of legislation creating the New Jersey Collaborating Center for Nursing at Rutgers University.

  • The collaborative developed a competency-based nursing practice model for the state. A 527-bed hospital agreed to implement the model on a pilot basis starting in 2003.

  • The collaborative helped update a state articulation model originally developed in 1992.