Nurses are the backbone of the healthcare industry. Nurses’ roles as patient advocates and skilled care providers will never be more essential for meeting the healthcare needs of an increasing number of patients. Nursing professionals in the majority of medical institutions across the globe are one of the most undervalued staff; the possible explanation seems to be that the healthcare system is a business about people’s daily lives, and they are the people who take care of our loved ones’ livelihoods whenever they are admitted to hospitals. Many nurses have taken the place of doctors in prompt, and they have been one of the most important people in the healthcare system.
In 2020, there were around 110 thousand registered nurses in Malaysia with around 156 government hospitals and 219 private hospitals. In Malaysia, to become a State Registered Nurse, one must complete three years of professional basic nurse education as required by the Nursing Board and pass the Nursing Board’s licensing examinations. Thereafter, they are required to register with the Nursing Board Malaysia and begin working as a nurse. The nursing program is attributed to the Joint Committee comprised of the Nursing Board of Malaysia, the Malaysian Qualifying Agency (MQA), and the Ministry of Higher Board Malaysia.
In other words, a competent nurse has to go through a number of procedures; nevertheless, their experience and expertise have not been recognized. As a result of this situation, nurses in especially those with limited resources have indeed been forced to change jobs, either to other countries or to different fields of endeavor, since other countries or industries would provide better pay and benefits and salaries. This also demonstrates that Malaysia has the lowest nursing density in the region as a result of excessive nurse migration and low hospital retention in Malaysia.
Malaysia Healthcare has reported excessive personnel turnover, which has resulted in greater expenses to the industry in terms of direct financial losses and a lack of continuing service. The situation is more complicated during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin says that Malaysia is currently undergoing a nurse shortage that must be discussed immediately to avoid a downturn subsequently.
In hospitals and clinics, nurses are in short supply. As a result, he said, the ministry has been ordered to conduct an extensive investigation and analysis (Arumugam, 2022). Nursing shortage seems to have become a global concern, with inadequate retention plans for nurses being one of the major reasons (Bordignon & Monteiro, 2019).
According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, healthcare facilities would then experience a global shortage of over 800,000 nurses by 2020, with a job vacancy rate of 29 percent, up from the current rate of 8 percent. Despite the fact that the profession of nursing is “aging out,” reducing the healthcare workforce, patient volume continues to increase as baby boomers seek more services. As to research, a lack of nurses affects well-being results like the nature of care, mobility, and mortality.
Nurses are an important workforce, accounting for more than half of the healthcare system, as per the WHO (2016). Because nurses provide 80 percent of direct patient care, a nurse shortage can have adverse consequences for patient care quality. As a consequence, nurses are important assets to health organizations, and their services should always be retained to ensure that patients receive quality health care (WHO, 2016). Malaysia’s healthcare industry has had a substantial impact on productivity and profitability.
Retaining nurses is one of the most difficult aspects of healthcare organizations across the world (Bobbio & Manganelli, 2015). The most challenging employment problem that healthcare organizations confront is the recruitment and retention of nursing staff.
Nursing is a high-demand profession that involves individuals being able to endure and sustain themselves in the context of significant physical and emotional complexities in the place of work. Antwi & Bowblis (2018) stated that new hires might become costlier since they must be taught and molded to be conversant with the policies, procedures, and operations of a healthcare environment.
Because of the nurses’ boundary-spanning duties, the mission of contributing to the health and well-being of Malaysian society has grown increasingly difficult and competitive. To mitigate its negative consequences, healthcare organizations must build robust retention programs, and those factors must be identified and resolved as soon as possible.
Furthermore, these shortcomings could result in nurses becoming relieved of their responsibilities, nurse dissatisfaction, demotivation, and poor patient care. As a direct consequence, access to safe, high-quality, and patient-centered care has diminished. As a result, there is an urgent need to address the factors that contribute to determinants of nurse employee retention so that a determination can be formed to address such concerns. This study aims to identify the determinants of nurse employee retention in Malaysian healthcare industries.
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