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At Thursday's weekly Cabinet meeting the Ministry of Health and Welfare (MOHW) presented a report on supply and demand issues relating to the nation's nursing workforce and associated policy modifications. Premier Chen Chien-jen said that the workload and pressure on Taiwan's nursing staff have increased exponentially in recent years due to the impact of Taiwan's aged society, increased demand for medical care, mounting challenges associated with nurses' workplace environments and factors relating to the COVID-19 pandemic. This has led to supply and demand problems within the nation's nursing workforce. It is therefore imperative that Taiwan builds a more reasonable and safer work environment for nurses in order to maintain the stability of the nation's health care system, he said.
The premier said that the 12 strategies devised by the MOHW include: promoting regulations for more reasonable nurse-patient ratios across all three shifts and incentivizing hospitals to achieve these ratios; instituting a mechanism to increase pay for night-shift nursing staff; awarding exemplary nurse-friendly workplaces; promoting an integrated inpatient care program; developing clinical mentorship systems for new nurses; and expanding nurse training programs. The premier hopes that by improving working conditions, salaries and benefits, these strategies will reinvigorate nursing staff and preserve the stability of Taiwan's medical care system.
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